Still, the five-year, $25 million contract signed by the Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver proves you can move on from personal blunders -- even colossal ones. Cooper met with reporters Thursday and, perhaps not surprisingly, was asked about the proposed rule change that would penalize players for using racial slurs.
In related news, The Washington Post reported Thursday that the NFL might be able to enforce on-field language under current rules in place. The league could enact the ban through a directive to game officials rather than a rule change, according to several people familiar with the discussions.
"I think you may see it made a point of emphasis," said one person with knowledge of the deliberations, speaking on the condition of anonymity. "The thought is that there is already the mechanism to deal with that under the existing rules."
One persistent question about the proposed rule change is how game officials can effectively enforce the penalty.
"The officials feel it can be done," the person said. "There are going to be times when you can't determine who said what. But there are times when you can determine it and can make a call. I think a lot of people deplore that type of language being so widespread and feel doing something about it is the right thing to do."
A rule change must be ratified by 24 of 32 owners. A point of emphasis from the NFL Competition Committee does not require an ownership vote. The committee will reconvene for more talks on the issue beginning Friday in Naples, Fla.