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There were at least 17 different teams touched by the more than two dozen arrests these past few months, and anytime a problem extends that wide, it usually runs top to bottom as well.

As noted above, this is first and foremost about personal responsibility. And to be fair, Goodell hasn’t been shy about doling out harsh punishment to any employee, and even harsher punishments to the league’s higher-ups. But what’s clear is that his message, no matter how many times he warns rookies to “protect the shield,” is still being greeted in too many corners of the league with little more than a wink and a nod.

So why not just spare us the lecture?

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Jim Litke is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. write to him at jlitke(at)ap.org and follow him at Twitter.com/JimLitke.