After various outlets seized on New York Jets defensive end Sheldon Richardson’s quote “guarantee[ing]” a win over the New England Patriots this weekend, Richardson fired back, calling out both the press and the league for the inanities and “BS” of dealing with media coverage.
The problem began when Metro New York pegged Richardson with the following quote, which the defensive end would later suggest was taken out of context:
This is going to be another win for us. We’ll let you all write the columns about validating wins and stuff like that. This is going to be another win in the win column if we got out there and execute and do what we’re supposed to do.
We’re going to be up in the division, that’s how we’re going to look at it. We’re going to be the front-runners, that’s how we look at it.”
On its own, the quote seems to fit the arrogance with which the press has assigned to Richardson. But not when it’s considered in the light of the question at hand.
Richardson was apparently asked, “whether a win over the defending Super Bowl champions would validate the Jets” -- and in saying “this is going to be another win,” he wasn’t really guaranteeing a victory as much as he was downplaying the potential significance of Sunday’s contest. Burned by misleading headlines, Richardson decided to direct his ire at NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
The Jet’s angry tweet refers to the NFL's policy that players “make themselves available to the media” or face the risk of a hefty fine. Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch put perhaps the brightest spotlight on the rule when -- after getting fined about double the average American income for ducking the media in prior instances -- he showed up at Super Bowl press day in January only to respond to the various questions sent his way with, “I’m just here so I don’t get fined.”
So Richardson responded to Metro New York’s query in the hope that he, like Lynch, wouldn’t get fined. Instead, he got even more media scrutiny for answering the question asked of him -- an end-result that illustrates the catch-22 these players often find themselves in when they’re sitting in front of the press.
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