I’m sure this morning is one of those where you wake up with a hangover, only without the benefit of having actually consumed alcohol the night before.
What a mess. It’s about the only way you can describe it, a mess. Where to begin? O-line? Run defense? Umm…….… QB?
I can imagine the frustration you feel, and I can only see it getting worse, because no matter how bad the rest of the team may have played, every single person with a camera, microphone, Iphone, sketch pad, crayon or - let’s face it - a head with two eyes, two ears and a mouth is going to end every exchange with you with that question.
And even if they don’t’ verbalize it – you know they’ll be thinking it, stronger than the strongest Jedi mind trick that Obi-wan could muster even when he was Ewan McGregor with a beard….
“When will Tebow go in?”
Better start getting those T-shirts printed up. You know, the ones printed with “ORTON IS OUR STARTER”. Because you’re going to need to wear them, every day this week. And if he has a bad day on Sunday – then it’ll be time to think about a tattoo.
Why won’t the fans understand? Don’t they get it? Kyle is cool head, experienced, who gives us our best chance to win! He was on track to be the leading passer last year. He has experience to keep our offense moving while we adjust the O-line and re-shape the defense. It’s not a good time to throw in an unpredictable rookie, who may take off running at every play. He’ll get himself hurt. We need a true pocket passer, because that’s how you win Superbowls. It’s football, it’s a profession, it’s a game of cold hard decisions, not emotional , irrational passion.. Why won’t the fans realize it? Why won’t they GIVE IT UP ALREADY.
.. because for some of us, it’s not a profession. It’s bigger than that.
For some of us – it’s the most exciting thing all week, all month, all year. (I had a kid late last month, so perhaps not for me). For some of us, it’s the one opportunity to scream and yell and cheer and hope and dream and wonder ‘what if’ and go crazy. It’s a chance to spend time with family, friends, relatives – and share the same feelings, the highs and the lows. I can tell you, for a fact, that I take in a breath and hold it on every play. Every damn play. I didn’t even realize it until last night. I’m glad I only moved to this country when in my 20’s, because this game may actually kill me. But I love it, and I watch it every chance I get.
Our professions aren’t like that – hopefully – or we’d go crazy. So we respect the fact that you can’t use the same passion to guide your decisions. But you need to respect the fact that we are fans. And without us – without the passion, the following, the ratings, the crowds, and of course the money – there’d be nothing.
So don’t you blame us – not one bit – when we act in a way that you may think is irrational, and question your decisions. Don’t blame us when we disagree with you. We don’t get paid the big bucks. You do. We pay your salary. We place that hope in your hands. So we have a right to question how you manage it.
It’s not rational to blame it all on Orton – because he’s one guy. But because he’s one guy, he’s not a “O-line” - it’s easier to channel frustration to one guy. But that’s us fans – irrational. Sue us.
And if we want to do something stupid like put in a QB is may be, by all *rational* (there I go with that word rational again) accounts “not ready” – then let us suggest that. Let us want that. Because you know what? Sometime it’s not about the rational facts. Sometimes it’s that annoying ‘hope and dream’ thing. Sometimes we just want to share someone’s hopes and dreams and watch them succeed and will them on. Sometimes that’s can be almost as fun as winning – the feeling of *willing* someone to win. And in most cases, that’s the only thing we can share with the players – the will to win.
I am an Orton fan. I have said it before – I have lost my voice cheering for him. He is a solid, dependable guy, devoid of that most aggravating human trait –ego. And you know what most disappointing play (for me?) was? The shot of him sitting on the Bench as the Raiders took the field for that last drive, with Tebow up on the sideline. I now realize it. It’s not his fumble, or his int, or his 3rd-and-long, or his red-zone conversion rate. It’s the passion. It’s the will to win. I’m sure it’s there. But I don’t see it. I don’t hear it in his comments. I don’t see it in his interaction with other players. And so it’s just not the same for me as it is with Tim. It’s not fair, but that’s the way it is.
But John(s), I’ll support you. I’ll cheer for Orton. He's doing his best to win, and he deserves my support because of that. I’ll *will* him to win, even if I can’t see him doing the same.
And I'll trust you.
But we’ll keep asking for Timmy. Because we’re like that. We’re fans. We won’t give up, because we’re passionate. It’s what a lot of us saw in Timmy. It’s what you like in us, so take the good with the bad. We’ll respect you, but you better respect us. Don’t dismiss us. Answer our questions. Explain it to us. Because the last person who didn’t – the last person who expected us to ‘just trust us, and not question us’...... well, I hope he enjoyed the St Louis summer.