During the latter stages of Day Three of the 2012 NFL Draft yesterday, we put a story up about Minnesota Vikings' running back Caleb King and the fact that he had been arrested on suspicion of third-degree assault. Some of the details are starting to emerge about the incident that got King arrested and, if they're true, it's going to wind up not being pretty for him.
King and the injured man were invited guests at a birthday party for a 21-year-old female friend of King's, hosted by her parents. About 3:15 a.m., the man allegedly teased King about his resemblance to a celebrity, then went outside to wait in a vehicle for a ride home.
King allegedly followed him, confronted him outside the car and struck him in the face. The victim reported getting into the car, locking the passenger door and calling 911 on his cellphone. King allegedly opened the driver's side door and pulled the man outside, struck him multiple times in the head and face with his fists, then threw him head first to the ground, according to the Sheriff's Office.
Now, in light of the Chris Cook incident, when many of us had the guy convicted before he was even formally charged, the principle of "innocent until proven guilty" needs to be kept in mind here. It's entirely possible that things didn't happen as they're described in the story from the Star-Tribune.
In a football sense, however, King is probably in big trouble. Cook is a high draft choice that had shown some flashes of brilliance last season prior to getting in trouble with the law, and plays a position that the Vikings are relatively thin at. King is an undrafted free agent that made the big roster for one game, during which he was inactive, and is on the depth chart at one of the Vikings' few positions of strength.
In short. . .in a purely football-related sense. . .King is expendable. Cook is not. I don't necessarily like it or think it's fair, really, but that's the reality of the situation. Even though Cook was found not guilty, I don't think he's an upstanding person or anything like that, but he's still a member of the Minnesota Vikings for that reason.
I hope that, for Caleb King's sake, things didn't go the way they're described as having gone. If they did, he's probably in huge trouble. I don't expect his career with the Minnesota Vikings to last much longer in any case, however. . .this incident probably just accelerated his inevitable release.