Football is so much more than a game played with a pigskin. For some, it's entertainment. Many women consider it the "other woman" taking their main squeeze away for five months a year. For the lucky ones, it's a way to make a living and a job. But for others, like Reggie Jones, it's life. And because of people like him, there are fans.
For as long as I can remember, I have been a Redskin fan. I used to be a die hard. I'd dream of being Art Monk and spend afternoons in Herndon trying to get my #81 jersey autographed after practices. To this day, if you name a number from the mid-80's, I can tell you who it belonged to. It's sad when a wheel cover on a jeep saying "Joe Jacoby" advertising his car dealership makes me smile. But it does.
But somewhere along the line, the Redskins lost me.
Don't get me wrong. I still cheer for them every Sunday and hate Dallas like no other, but I just don't live and breathe football like I used to. I stopped caring. There have been moments that made me want to get into it again... Ya know, like the LaVar Arrington Eastern Motors commercials that made me laugh just as hard as you-tubing "Beyonce Clown". Or when I drove up a sixteen passenger van full of my group home kids from Richmond to bring them to training camp years ago. Yes, I was the crazy chick with the eight month pregnant teen having an asthma attack and the hoard of bebe kids that stormed the turf and got chewed out. Luckily, LaVar showed up on a golf cart, nodded at us like it was o.k. that we had lost control of the hoodlums, and greeted them even signing a football- which now that I think about it, my fellow co-worker ganked and I never saw again! I know in my heart of hearts LaVar knew our kids were "special." LaVar's not the only good guy... I smile with pride everytime I'm driving to preschool and I see how Chris Cooley has invested and opened a gallery in downtown Leesburg, suddenly bringing life and hope to my town. And no matter how many field goals Gano misses, I will be a fan because not a day went by this summer that he wasn't working his little heart out at my local gym... and he and his wife are just as normal as they come. Nor will I forget how Lichtensteiger spent an hour straight signing autographs for the common folk at training camp winning the heart of every mom's group member in the area even taking pictures with kids. And it was such a cool story when I head D. Hall had ponyed up tickets for his son's third grade class to a game. It's players like this that have almost made me want to sport a jersey and be able to rattle off statistics once again.
But something was still missing. Until Reggie Jones came to D.C..
For those that don't know, Jones came from the Saints and blogged his journey during training camp on my cousin's website fatpickled.com. He took the time to give fans a glimpse into his life. The news did spots on him and The Washington Post even ran a story about his trials and what has given him the power to be who he is today.
For the first time in years, I was rooting for someone. I wanted to schedule a playdate with little Dash and Wifey made me want to be better wife. I mean, after being stuck home with a baby all day, she must really love that man if she wanted to watch yet another movie in the man cave. And if all else fails, this dude needs to channel Etan Thomas and go into writing- I swear he could write a motivational book by penning his sign-offs. He posesses natural, God-given writing ability.
Now, I get that not everyone is going to make the squad. Cuts suck and the best of the very best play in the NFL. But this guy was good. He was everything a Redskin should be. His story had me engaged and I was googleing who made the 53 man roster. He didn't. But he did make the practice squad.
Or so I thought.
I found out last night that he made the practice squad only to be released later when it was too late to sign with another team. SCREWED.
I'm a woman. I get it. I don't know football. But I do know that that's not how you treat someone who has done nothing but positive things for your organization. And it pisses me off. What comes around, goes around Dan. And you can suck it Snyder.
Football is so much more than a game. And this year, Baltimore is looking pretty good right now. They have a coach that is as down to earth as they come, had enough sense to keep Tyrod Taylor, and Michael Oher is the type of athlete that can make someone a fan. Just like Reggie Jones would have done to me.