Each summer, the NFL gathers all its draft picks in a symposium and alerts them to the potential trouble that comes with being young, rich and famous. It's a great idea, and I've told by more than one young player that it's been a big help to their adjustment to living with money and fame.
One of the messages at the symposium: If you have to cut ties to events and people in your past, cut them, and cut them before it's too late. It's a message that played out prominently in the Michael Vick story. Vick never became a contributing member of the Atlanta society, preferring to stay tethered to his Virginia home and Virginia friends. He started a new life, but only halfheartedly; his real life other than in football was all with his friends from the past.
The danger there is that if you need to cut them off and move on, sometimes you can't. Either because of a sense of loyalty, or some vow you made a long time ago that if one of us makes it big, he'll bring the others with him. And the others, many times, are the ones who bring trouble with them.
Again, it's far too early to know why Taylor's home was broken into twice in eight days, or why he was shot and killed. Let's let the legal system work. For now, our thoughts go out to his grieving family and to his friends who are hurting right now. It's a terrible loss.