“No one wins with a band of 53 choir boys.” I’ve heard this quote again and again in regards to the legal problems NFL players seem to encounter. My question is-do players with an “edge” bring something irreplaceable to a team, and has there been a Super Bowl winner with no arrests on their team that year?
I doubt guys who get drunk and get in fights or beat their wives or girlfriends bring anything special to the team. It’s just that this isn’t the NFL’s top priority and the culture is stereotypically masculine, so they make excuses. In recent years the league has started to suspend guys who get in trouble with the law if the crime is high-profile enough, but overall, if you play well and don’t embarrass the team or the league and don’t cause a problem, they don’t care.
The quote is simply saying that non-aggressive and competitive football teams rarely win, and that the flip side is true, by implying that choir boys aren’t aggressive or competitive.
That doesn’t really mean that criminals and thugs are an integral part of a winning football team, but that “nice” players aren’t really wanted, because “nice” != aggressive or competitive.
I don’t think there’s any evidence that drunks, coke fiends, wife beaters, rapists or thugs are better football players, on the whole, than law abiding citizens. But there’s no question that many coaches LIKE having at least a few head cases on their rosters (whether they say so publicly or not), and that very few coaches willingly dump a productive player solely for off-the-field offenses.
I don’t think Jerry Rice would have been a better receiver if he’d spent more time chasing hookers and snorting coke… but then Michael Irvin did those things a lot, and it never seemed to hurt his production on the field.
Clean-living Christian quarterbacks like Roger Staubachand Kurt Warner have won Super Bowls… but so have beer drinkers and hell raisers.
I just don’t think there’s any real connection between personal morality and high performance, for good OR for ill. SOME “nice guys” finish last, but so do lots of creeps. There’s no cause and effect here.
Bill Parcells said just that in a public retort to the wife of Patriots owner, Bob Kraft, when she complained about a Patriots draft pick that turned out to have series of rape/assault allegations.
As Marley mentioned, they really don’t care about a kid’s background as long as he can stay out of jail and out of the newspapers. The Pats knew all about Aaron Hernandez’ gang ties when they drafted him. But I’m sure regret signing him to a 3 year deal with too much guaranteed money, because it hurt them under the salary cap rules, when they cut him. Now their best defensive back, Aqib Talib is a FA, but he has a troubled history, and they appear to be reluctant to give him a multii-year deal with too much upfront $$. So they’ve learned a little bit.
Seems to me that fans should be more upset about pro football teams importing thugs to their neighborhoods.
When you read scouting reports something you’ll see a lot, usually with offensive lineman, is the term “mean streak.”
I’ve always interpreted it as the certain mentality that enables one to be physically aggressive with someone you don’t necessarily intend to injure. As an OL you want to dominate your man and take him completely out of the play; it’s extremely difficult to physically dominate an opponent, but be nice about it.
It goes hand in hand with the old adage “If you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying.”
I don’t think it’s required but I don’t doubt that some people draw their inspiration through their badassness.