Lost amidst the buzz of the recent
The Minnesota Vikings allowed six-time Pro Bowl center
"The Minnesota Vikings thank Matt for all he did for the organization both on and off the field over the past 11 years. Matt has done a great job and we wanted him to return to the Vikings in '09, but at this point Matt wanted a change of scenery. We wish him the best and know that he will always be a part of the Vikings family. We look forward to playing Matt this upcoming season at the Metrodome."
At a minimum, I thought it was a poor choice of words for Childress when talking about a guy so revered in the community that he has been named the Vikings Man of the Year for seven-straight seasons. That is no typo. Birk, who also owns a couple of restaurants in the area, has been the de facto face of the franchise for the past 11 years while
Just as importantly, Birk weathered the quarterback storm the last couple of years and helped
Though I am surprised Baltimore would value him more highly than Minnesota, I can understand the financial reasons for why the Vikings did not want to pay Birk the $12 million over three years, including $9 million over the first two, that he will get from Baltimore. That being said, I don't think their smug statement did Childress' popularity in Minnesota any favors.
Time for some mail ...
That is a very salient point, James, and one I think about often. Yes, as a new member of the media, I do take some responsibility for the amount of attention thrust upon these guys after their mishaps. In fact, one of the biggest complaints I had as a player and get from players now is the media focuses too much on the negative and not enough on the positive such as charity work, community service, etc.
But to blame the media would be foolhardy for multiple reasons. For one, the media didn't commit any of these crimes or initiate any of this divisiveness. More important, if I have learned anything in this industry it is that the public has a tremendous amount of say in how stories are covered. In other words, media outlets try to give the people what they want.
If I talk on my show on Sirius NFL Radio about a player hosting a charity event and bring him on the program to talk about it, we will get one or two people to call in and talk about how commendable that player is and what a fine example he is. If we talk about Pacman or Vick, the phones lines will be jam-packed for hours. The same holds true for the written word. More people will click on the link talking about T.O. skipping the start of voluntary workouts than the story about a player donating jerseys and cleats to his old high school.
So I guess the question could just as easily be do you, James, take any responsibility as a member of the public for all of the negative stories? Think about it.
Thanks for totally negating the point I just made to the other James above.
But you at least read enough of it to send me an e-mail, so maybe my theory still holds true.
I highly doubt it because smart people get in trouble all the time. I personally don't even think the Wonderlic, as just one measurement of intelligence, is all that critical. I am much more concerned about what's known in the football world as FBI (football intelligence). I know several Ivy League guys with great Wonderlic scores have struggled with the complexity of picking up the different schemes and gotten cut as a result of it.
FBI is what really matters but any measure of intelligence like the Wonderlic is simply another part of the evaluation and something to consider. Whether it is vitally important or not wasn't even my point. My contention is these test results should be as accessible as the physical testing numbers generated at the combine.
It really depends upon the team and the makeup of the individuals but in general position groups tend to hang out with each other because they spend the most time together in the facility and thus there is a certain level of familiarity. Outside of that, guys are more likely to hang out with teammates who have the same interests whether that be bible study or clubbing. Single guys usually hang out with other single guys and players with families tend to socialize with other players with families, just like elsewhere in society.