As dedicated fans of a sports team, we all understand and share the desire for our team to win every Sunday. We buy their merchandise, purchase tickets to their games, and spend the entire off-season prognosticating on how to improve the team.
But, sometimes, winning comes at too high a price.
The NFL has had no shortage of players who's athletic talent is overshadowed by the flaws in their character: from Pacman Jones, to Matt Jones, Plaxico Burres, Michael Vick, and now Lawrence Taylor just to name a few. Sadly, the NFL also has countless enablers from owners to GMs to coaches who are eager to excuse or ignore these individuals' problems if they think the troubled players can help them win a title. Guns, drugs, drunk driving, and domestic violence are all too common among NFL players both past and present.
That's why I'm glad that the Falcon organization, under the guidance of the Comrade and Coach Smith, seems to be committed to signing players who are not only talented on the field but who are also good men off it since the painful Vick-saga and the turmoil that followed. Instead of going after guys like Pacman Jones or Larry Johnson we've added Tony Gonzales and Michael Turner.
So the next time you wonder why the Falcons might pass on more physically gifted players and instead chose individuals with fewer physical tools but greater character in the draft or in Free Agency, just remember that the Falcon organization is building both a success full football team and one that we fans can be proud of.