I happen to think that sports and movies are pretty similar. The actors represent the players, the movies represent the teams, and the fans represent the audience. You have your secondary roles/players and then your stars. The Oscars/box office are equivalent to your Super Bowls. You pay money to see their movies and hope that your favorite stars don't turn in a terrible flick. Actors/Players make a ton of money, too.
You also have guys who mess up and you read about it. You hear about how Christian Bale went ballistic against a DP on the set of Terminator. Russell Crowe throwing a telephone at some hotel clerk. Robert Downey Jr. having more rehabs than Shawn Merriman's achilles tendon. Tom Cruise preaching more than Tim Tebow. You always hear about some of these actors being divas. It's plastered on the news constantly.
However, as movie goers, do we refuse to see any of these guys in movies because of this?
It's because you like them. It's because they add to the film you are watching. You want to be entertained. You want the best. Without Christian Bale as Batman, the franchise takes a hit. I never hear about someone being turned off by an actor and his extra curricular stuff that they refuse to see their movies. Only guy who comes to mind is Mel Gibson....and I'll still watch Braveheart 200 times.
For most, you don't demand for them to get off the big screen, do you? The only time you do is when they start producing bombs. However, off the movie screen, actors make mistakes, but at the end of the day, it is all about the finished project. They always say, Hollywood is very forgiving.
Not in sports though.
Its become a constant criticism for stuff that doesn't really have to do with the on the field play. It becomes exaggerations. Yeah...Stevie Johnson's celebrations cost the Bills wins, right? If he handed the ball to the referee, Fitzpatrick wouldn't have thrown 4 ints yesterday. Allow me to use hyberboles, because the media seems to do the same.
Did Stevie Johnson deserve to get benched? Yes. He disobeyed a Chan Gailey rule and messed up. However, in the grand schemes, it resulted in a 15-yard penalty that the Pats weren't able to capitalize. For that, we have to get rid of Stevie Johnson? Come on! Stevie's a good player. He made a few mistakes, but at the end of the day, I care about the product I am seeing. You want role models? Be friends with teachers.
He helps the Bills and if he leaves the team, IT DOES NOT MAKE THEM BETTER. Spare me with the team comradery BS. I want players, not humanitarians. I don't care what these guys do off the field. I don't care if they have egos. I didn't care that Marshawn Lynch was a knucklehead. I didn't care that Willis McGahee hated the nightlife. I don't care that Christian Bale is an assclown. I didn't care that everyone has a story about the 90's Bills being complete jackasses off the field. I care about winning.
I want players! I want to win. I don't need "Man of the Year" Candidates. Work your ass off on Sunday and that's all I ask.
Stevie leaving doesn't help the Bills next year.
Nowadays, it is all about the media trying to throw these guys out of here for anything. Maybe it gets that way in WNY because the Bills have been so bad for so long that you need to write/read about new things. How many times can you write about Ralph Wilson or that QB situation? It gets uninteresting. So, the media takes this high moral ground for guys being trouble makers. I also hate how they tend to reach for the stars with trying to make #13's celebrations the game changing moment. If Johnson stayed on the field, the Bills would have still allowed 49 points.
However, it goes back to discussing something new.
Here's the bottom line in everything, this isn't about Stevie's antics or Jerry Sullivan, this is about money. I'm not letting Johnson's two personal foul penalties or some TV Bills reporters, skewer my judgment. The Bills are worried about Stevie's antics? Really? Isn't this the same team who gave Terrell Owens 6.5 million a year? That dude makes Stevie look like a mute. Signing Johnson is hardly making a deal with the Devil like it was with Owens.
If this was 2002, I wouldn't be such a cynic. I've seen the Bills/Reporters leak/write stuff about Lynch being a trouble maker, Jason Peters being lazy, Lee Evans demanding a trade and McGahee hating WNY. I'm sure in the coming months, we will hear the same stuff about Johnson in order to justify letting him go.
Heck, I watched a local sports show last night, and one of the hosts said they should give Johnson 5-6 million a year. Are you kidding me? Brad Smith makes 3.5 million bucks a year and had like 30 catches for his career!? Get a clue, dude. Research what #1 wideouts make.
Johnson is going to get paid this offseason. He'll make 8-10 million a year. Bernard Berrian get 7-million a year from the Vikings in 2008 and his career high in catches was 55 and never went over 1,000 yards. Santonio Holmes made 10-million a year and he never went over 65 catches. Oh, great, there's your excuse that Stevie bashers and Bills watch dogs will use. We will compare Johnson to Holmes.
"You see how that turned out!?"
Yeah, that's it. You know, because one guy argued with his QB/coach, smoked pot and quit on his team. While the other guy got a 15-yard penalty.
The Bills let guys go constantly. It's always a money ball situation, especially with the rookie cap. A 1st round pick at the 10th spot will cost the Bills anywhere between 3-4 million bucks a year. Now, besides the whole making the team better with Johnson coming back, it is also about me wanting the Bills to show a gesture that they really care about winning. They have screwed with this fanbase for so many years, that for just once, I'd like to feel that they have my best interest.
In the end, it's not about Stevie or antics, it's about having the best product on the field. That's all I care about. If the Bills want to sign Vincent Jackson, or Mario Manningham for cheaper and add a LB, fine. Just show me you want to get better. You've won 16 games in three years. You are going into year three of your rebuilding plan. You have money under the cap. Get better.
Some in the media said Bills fans are trying to enable #13. I'm not enabling Stevie Johnson, instead, I'm trying to enable the Bills to get better for a change.