ESPN football analyst Booger McFarland called out how some NFL players, especially young African-Americans, don’t take the game seriously.
His comments on Monday night were in response to Dwayne Haskins being released by the Washington Football Team.
“Oftentimes, young players, especially — I’m gonna go ahead — especially young African-American players, because they make up 70 percent of this league — they come into this league and ask themselves the wrong thing,” McFarland said. “They come into the league saying not ‘How can I be a better player?’ They don’t say ‘How can I be a better teammate?’ They don’t say ‘How can I be a better person; how can get my organization over the hump?’
“Here’s what they come in saying. They come in saying, ‘How can I build my brand better? How can I build my social media following better? How can I workout on Instagram and show everybody that I’m ready to go, but when I get to the game, I don’t perform?'”
Booger McFarland Brings Up JaMarcus Russell
McFarland also brought up the saga of JaMarcus Russell, a former No. 1 NFL draft pick at quarterback out of LSU for the then-Oakland Raiders. Russell flamed out of the NFL after gaining too much weight and not making the plays when needed.
“Dwayne Haskins unfortunately is not the first case that I’ve seen like this,” McFarland said. “And it won’t be the last. And it bothers me because a lot of it is the young African-American player. They come in and they don’t take this as a business. It is still a game to them. …
“I saw a quarterback do it,” he said. “I saw JaMarcus Russell do it. The No. 1 pick in the draft, they gave him $40 million, and he threw it down the damn drain because he didn’t take it seriously.”
Johnny Manziel, Ryan Leaf Could Join Flameout List
While McFarland was specifically talking about African-American NFL players, there are others who are not African-American that were flameouts too.
Case in point: Johnny Manziel, who tore it up for Texas A&M with his swashbuckling style of play at quarterback. The Cleveland Browns selected him to be a leader on their team. Well, all “Johnny Football” did was go out, party, and never took his game seriously. He’s no longer playing pro football, period.
Ryan Leaf was going to be another quarterback that helped his team, the then-San Diego Chargers, go forward after their great success under Dan Fouts. It didn’t work out for Leaf as he had constant run-ins with the press and couldn’t get out of his own way on the field. Off the field, drug addiction took its toll on the now clean-and-sober Leaf.
Both Manziel and Leaf, along with Haskins and Russell, are case studies in how not to approach your NFL career.
H/T: Yahoo! Sports