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Thursday, May 18, 2006

NFL Should Pressure Federal Government On New Orleans Reconstruction Process

After almost one year, New Orleans is still a shaddow of it's former self. Many are still without jobs, housing , and heath care and many businesses that once thrived are either non-existent or struggling.

It's in this environment that the NFL's New Orleans Saints attempt to regrow their franchise. For all practical purposes, the Saints are an expansion team that's relocated to a city. Why do I say this? Because New Orleans itself has been altered by this disaster. Thus, the population of businesses once available to buy luxury boxes and sponsorships is no longer there.

All of this can be solved by the focused involvement of the Federal Government. But once can say that the Bush Administration has all but forgotten New Orleans. The region is not the focus of the President's televised actvities. This is important because where the President is seen, is where we as a people are conditioned to believe our resources are needed.

Rebuilding New Orleans successfully would be a sign of American resolve and know-how. Re-creating the city would restore a vital part of the soul of America. Having a place the Saints can not just survice in, but thrive in would be a wonderful development that would secure of the future of the NFL in that city.

The NFL should apply pressure to cause the Bush Administration to restore it's focus to New Orleans. Indeed, the NFL's probably the best organization to do this. It can via its United Way Commericials and special annoucements. The NFL, more than any other organization, can really change how the government treats New Orleans.

I hope the league takes its rightful leadership role.

Profootballtalk.com "REGGIE (BUSH) REALLY IS A SELFISH ASSHOLE" - My Take On This

Profootballtalk.com is not shy aout firing insults here and there. Florio's latest target is none other than the Saint's star running back Reggie Bush. I hate to say this, but as much as I don't like how he put it, Florio may have a point.

Here's what he wrote:


With apologies to everyone out there who has lined up to nuzzle the crotch of the 2005 Heisman* winner, we've decided after careful consideration that, in our opinion, Reggie Bush is a selfish asshole.

And our decision in this regard was not influenced significantly by the storm of controversy regarding whether and to what extent Bush and his family got paid while Bush was still playing for USC. We believe that this sort of stuff happens, in varying degrees, at most major college football programs, and that if the Bushes are guilty of anything it's of being careless to the point of stoopid.

No, we reached our final opinion regarding Reggie only recently, when we were reminded by a reader that the number he so desperately wants to wear at the pro level, No. 5, is already spoken for on the team that drafted him.

Quarterback Adrian McPherson, drafted by the Saints in 2005 because (as we hear it) he reminded the organization of Vince Young, currently is assigned No. 5. But there has been not a peep from the Bush camp reflecting a scintilla of respect for the fact that someone else holds the rights to the number that Reggie wants.

Hell, there's likewise been no comment from Team Bush regarding the fact that his fallback choice -- No. 25 -- is the property of Fred McAfee.

So if wearing No. 5 or (if that fails) No. 25 is such a big deal for Bush, why doesn't Bush think it might be a big deal for the guys who already wear those numbers?

Folks, whether you like or dislike Reggie Bush, his current mentality falls within the four corners of the textbook definition of selfish.

Per Webster.com, "selfish" means "seeking or concentrating on one's own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others."

Without regard for others.

So it's a no-brainer. By showing zero regard for the fact that McPherson owns No. 5 and McAfee owns No. 25, Bush is selfish.

Of course, Bush's handlers are smart enough to know that Reggie must pander to the Katrina victims by promising to donate 25 percent of the earnings from the sale of his jersey to ongoing relief efforts. Whoop-de-doo. It's an obvious P.R. move aimed at selling even more jerseys and, in the end, pocketing more money than if he'd kept 100 percent of the proceeds without making the commitment.

The other problem here is that the Saints are aiding and abetting Bush's selfish assholishness. They allowed him to wear No. 5 at the team's recent minicamp, even though the number has been issued to McPherson.

And as to McPherson, we're making an open offer to negotiate on his behalf -- at no charge -- the transaction with Bush for the rights to No. 5, assuming that the NFL changes its rules regarding jersey numbering. If, after all, Bush and his people are pushing the issue in order to enhance Reggie's earning potential, McPherson could end up holding an asset worth much more than a bowl of soup at Mendy's. It's a seven-figure proposition, and hopefully McPherson realizes it.

So how much should McPherson request for No. 5? Just enough to get Bush to accuse him of being selfish.

Now, I remember that as Bush was walking to the podium for his interview after being selected Number Two Pick in The First Round by the Saints, he actually gave a massively dirty look as I pointed my camcorder to record his arrival. It was weird to me in that regardless of his position, he was selected as one of the top players in the USA and will be paid handsomely for it. Why frown? Why be nasty? It seeemed that he was totally upset that he wasn't picked number one.

I hope Reggie isn't given a nasty wake up call that causes him to appreciate what God gives to him. He's in New Orleans for a reason. It's not by accident. He's got to understand what it means to think about other people before himself. Let the lesson begin.

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