On October 5th, 2009 I awoke shocked to hear that the Browns had traded their #3 overall draft pick from just four years prior. Braylon Edwards bags were packed and he was on his way to New York before I even got to work. I read up on the situation to see what we got in return for our one time Pro Bowl receiver. Before reading I had some things in my mind that we would have to get in return for this to be a good trade for the Browns. The list was as follows:
A burned copy of Nelly’s Country Grammar
a Twix bar.
That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less. If they couldn’t come up with Country Grammar I would have even settled for the edited version of Nellyville from Wal-Mart. What I am trying to say is that Edwards welcome in Cleveland was almost all but worn out. He had reversed his reputation as a premier receiver in a little over a season. He had done this by not catching anything. He couldn’t catch the punch line of a joke, a cold, a plane and sure as shit he couldn’t catch the ball. We thought it would wear off and it might be a phase, but we were painfully mistaken.
Now Braylon Edwards is playing for a team that has made it to the AFC Championship game. They will be playing the Colts this Sunday in what is sure a riveting game. Braylon had 2 catches for 41 yards in the Jets win over the San Diego Super Chargers in a game that I look at as a fluke. Ya know, kind of like the reason they are in the playoffs at all. After the game, Braylon was interviewed in the locker room where he had this to say;
“I’ve got to go on the record and thank Eric Mangini for giving me a chance to be part of Coach Rex and the things that we’re doing as a team”
You are so welcome. I wonder how many people in Jets land are thanking Eric Mangini for the chance to have Braylon Edwards on their team. I’m sure everyone would like Braylon signed to a long term contract after the season. Please. I can’t honestly believe that Edwards feels like he is welcomed in New York or even feels like he was part of this run they are making. Apparently Braylon couldn’t take a coach that actually coached and maintained discipline, a coach that hold you accountable for your actions. Eric Mangini did that, Romeo Crennelephant did not. That may be a big reason we didn’t see or hear how it was so hard for Braylon to come to work in Cleveland.
“It’s hard, hard coming to work when you don’t really feel like you have a chance, or your team isn’t that good, but Oct. 5, it changed,” he said referring to the day he was traded. “I got brought to the New York Jets organization that has circled everything around winning. All pettiness was null and void, it’s not a part of what we do. Everything is centered around the best way to win football games — and that’s letting people be who they are. That’s letting guys go out there and work hard at their craft every day and staying together.”
Braylon then clarified his statement and made sure that people knew he wasn’t taking for granted his NFL career. I call bullshit. I understand not liking your job and not being motivated. I understand that when you are getting paid $40,000 a year to get shit on. But if you are getting paid millions of dollars TO PLAY FOOTBALL you shut the f*ck up and play your hardest. You thought it was hard going to work? I found it vomit inducing to watch your play on the football field. I kept praying that somehow you would run into K2 during slants and hopefully knock each other out. That or Mangini would get some kind of industrial adhesive to make the ball stick to the cinder blocks you call hands.
“But if you’re on a losing team, the mentality, it hurts you as a player. Waking up every morning, I’m working hard, I’m busting my butt, I’m risking injury just to go out and lose. I’m the laughingstock of the N.F.L., I’m ridiculed as a player.”
He uses the word team here, but then proceeds to use the term “I’m” 5 times after it. So are you telling me that you think the rest of this team didn’t work hard, bust their butt or get ridiculed? You are delusional and self centered for this statement and it is a testament to why no one in Cleveland has missed you. This is why we laugh our asses off as Browns fans when you drop a pass. This is why we text each other jokes about how you can’t catch anything. The team wins together and loses together but apparently that isn’t your mantra. Apparently you can’t do anything wrong and it’s the team that can’t get it done. I wonder Braylon, do you refer to yourself in the third person too?
If there really is a football God that we have so many times called upon, I will ask him for one more thing this season…Please Football God, do not let the Jets make the Super Bowl. If they do somehow upend Indianapolis on Sunday, it will be the first Super Bowl I Tivo in order to fast forward to the commercials.
Look for the entire Braylon article in the New York Times today, January 19th.