Jeff Passan source:

The best ‘Ryan Fitzpatrick went to Harvard’ story you’ll ever read

Shutdown Corner

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Did you know Ryan Fitzpatrick went to Harvard? Maybe you heard it one of the 3,000 times its mentioned during a Bills game, or in the top paragraphs of every article about him in which his college is referenced in a joking way, either to serve as the civilized, pinky-extended tea-sipping counter to the barbarianism of football or to celebrate the dichotomy between Fitzpatrick's intellect and the community college-type decisions he can sometime make on the field.

Case in point (from the last six days alone):

"Ryan Fitzpatrick doesn't need a Harvard degree to deduce his interceptions." -- Los Angeles Times

"Fitzpatrick, with a decision out of Faber College and not Harvard University, tried to force a ball deep to Stevie Johnson, and Webster plucked the ball out of the sky, regenerating the Giants and re-energizing the stadium." -- New York Post

"That's when Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Harvard-educated quarterback, flunked the fundamental question on the deep sideline route." -- The New York Times

"Fewell has a special feeling for Fitzpatrick. After he took over as coach, he made the Harvard player his starter." -- Associated Press (This is my favorite, when a writer tries to slip it in, as if they'd be mentioning Fitzpatrick's alumni had he gone to Maryland.)

We mention this today because Fitzpatrick is close to signing a deal during Buffalo's bye week that would pay him $10 million per year to remain with the Bills. (Oh, the Harvard puns we'll be rolling in if Fitzpatrick signs an eight-digit deal.) And, on this occasion, we thought it'd be fun to share the best story about Ryan Fitzpatrick and Harvard, straight from the Crimson man himself. He told this to the Washington Post back in 2006 (the original link is dead, but I had saved it for posterity on my old website):

Teammates expect me to know every answer to every question. During training camp, some guys were in a big, heated discussion, so I walked over to see what they were talking about. They said, 'Fitz, you can answer this question, you're from Harvard.' I said, 'Okay, maybe it's some trivial question, some history, something.' They said, 'What do you think would hurt more, getting hit in the face by the trunk of an elephant or being kicked in the face by a donkey?'

Is there a chance Fitzpatrick's teammates were talking about the metaphorical kicks and slaps of the Republican and Democratic parties? In that case, Fitzpatrick would be a perfect arbiter of a decision, for, you see, he went to Harvard, and thus should be up on the politics of the day.

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