If you're lucky enough to land a job that gets you into an NFL game for free, part of the deal is that you're not permitted to pester the Gods In Attendance for autographs, photographs, loans, fathering of children, et cetera. You're all here to do a job, and part of that involves being somewhat professional in the execution of your duties.
So it's no surprise, then, that Reliant Stadium didn't look too kindly on two of its security guards posing for pictures with Tom Brady after Sunday's Texans-Patriots game. Christopher Moore (in the left photo above) and Joel Williams (in the right photo) caught Brady (whom we assume you recognize) as he was headed to the team bus after his media duties, and asked him for a quick snap. Brady complied, but immediately afterward, Williams told KHOU, the hammer dropped.
“Immediately after I took the picture, I got ran down by a supervisor,” Williams said. “They didn’t really give a reason. They said, you know, you’re wrong and you’re fired."
Contemporary Services Corporation, which handles staffing for Texans games, released a statement to KHOU which read: "It is strictly against CSC policy for its employees to request photos or autographs from players. CSC stands by its decision to terminate the two employees who violated this policy.”
Williams said he was already done with his duties for the day. Moore employed the "others do it, why can't we?" angle. Neither approach worked.
As annoying as the NFL's do-not-look-the-players-in-the-eye-you-peasants stance is, it's understandable; if players had to run a gauntlet of autograph- and photo-seeking employees every time they stepped out of the locker room, nothing would ever get done. And the last thing you want your security detail to be is starstruck. It's reminiscent of the 2012 American League Division Series, when two Maryland state troopers drew heat for asking Yankees Derek Jeter and Nick Swisher for autographs.
And hey, it could've been worse. They could've tried to get a picture with Bill Belichick. That could've ended in blood.
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- Tom Brady