The New York Jets will host Matt Araiza for a workout Wednesday, the free agent punter’s agent told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Araiza has been out of the NFL since being released by the Buffalo Bills last August, two days after a lawsuit was filed accusing him and two former San Diego State teammates of being involved in an alleged gang rape of a 17-year-old girl.
Right, so what happened is that back in December, Araiza was cleared of criminal wrongdoing. No charges filed. It was later revealed that he was not present on the scene when this alleged gang rap occurred.
Araiza is close to full exoneration, but the legal process continues via an ongoing civil case with the accuser, who Araiza says he had a consensual encounter with. He’s been on the record multiple times saying that the girl told him she was 18 years old, when she was in fact underage at the time.
In a recent sitdown with Tomi Lahren, Araiza said he would not settle the civil suit because it could be construed as an admission of guilt. He does not want to waive his right to countersue, and with recent developments in the case, it looks like he is on a path here to winning the case, clearing his name, and then getting another shot in the NFL.
People got very mad at us the other night on Twitter because we were arguing in the replies after dumbass Dan Sileo put this bullshit out there:
MORE evidence that Araiza has been vindicated!!!….@CrossingBroad guys still think he's guilty!!https://t.co/DmL8WBivq6
— #BigSilz (@DanSileoShow) May 22, 2023
Just to clear this up, not once have we ever said that Matt Araiza is “guilty.” We’ve barely even touched on the topic.
What we have mentioned in the past is the possibility that NFL teams had not yet brought him in because of the pending civil suit, which seems to be tripping people up. While Araiza had been cleared of criminal wrongdoing way back in December, he wasn’t fully through the legal process because of the civil suit, which he’s not going to settle. There really isn’t any other plausible explanation as to why teams were hesitant to bring him in before this Jets workout, unless you believe A) that the other 30 squads not named Buffalo and NY are currently happy with their punting situations, or B) that Araiza isn’t actually that good.
Also, it’s 100% true that if Araiza was a franchise QB and not a rookie punter, then the civil suit would mean absolutely nothing. Someone like Aaron Rodgers would have been given much more preferential treatment, right? We all know that. Araiza didn’t get the benefit of shit because he was a specialist and a late round draft pick.
Ultimately, Araiza lost a year of his career because the Bills and almost everyone else jumped the gun, essentially thinking this guy was guilty until proven innocent. Due diligence was totally absent. He’s now on a path to clearing his name, and the last legal hurdle is a resolution to the civil suit.