Knee-jerk reactions a blight on the game

In the aftermath of the latest Todd Carney drink driving drama many are saying he should be suspended for a couple of matches.

But is this an over reaction? Yes he did the wrong thing and yes he deserves to be punished with a fine, community service what ever is necessary but suspending him from matches is a bit over the top.

When you consider Anthony Watmough was speeding 50 km's over the limit (and he's no cleanskin either) and did not have to suffer suspension for any matches, I think standing Carney down is too heavy a price to pay.

The NRL has a tendency to have knee jerk reactions to situations such as this, rather than laying down a set of rules fair for every one from the beginning. As a result we have too many inconsistencies in the various punishments for players who misbehave.

A good example is the Brett Stewart situation in 2009 when he was suspended for 4 matches and taken off the NRL's advertising campaign only to be found innocent after a lengthy trial.

This begs the question why was he suspended?

In Todd Carney's circumstances he is guilty but if we are going to start suspending players for DUI or speeding where do we draw the line? Driving offences should be a matter first for the courts and then the club to decide the best course of action and not the NRL.

The NRL clearly feels pressured by some media outlets but it needs to block that out and make the correct decision and not suspend Carney.

When the Independent Commission finally takes control hopefully we can have a set of guidelines on what is the best course of action for these situations before they occur.

Consistency and fairness in these situations is what the fans want.