April 15, 2011
Answer the same question enough and you're bound to eventually say something stupid in response. To end the week, Shutdown Corner looks at recent quotes by Michael Vick(notes) and Braylon Edwards(notes) about their past misdeeds and determines which NFL star described it the worst:
Michael Vick on his incarceration, to the Wall Street Journal:
"I'm happy that I turned out to be the person I am, and I wouldn't change anything about my life if I could. [...] As crazy as this may sound, going to prison really changed my life. I was able to go in and come out with a plan."
Quotes like this show you why Vick's handlers wanted to keep him away from Oprah. Statements he thinks are profound and sympathetic come across as selfish and callous. "Everything turned out fine for me, so I'm cool."
You can see where Vick was trying to go with this; he was on the wrong path and it took prison to get him straight. Tony Dungy has probably whispered some variation of that in his ear a hundred times in the past 24 months. He doesn't get that message across when he speaks. All you hear is "me, me, me." There's no regard for his family, no regret for his laziness in Atlanta and no hint that maybe, if he had to do it all over again, he'd have gone about things differently.
Braylon Edwards on his 2010 DUI arrest, to WXYT in Detroit:
"Why I got pulled over wasn't even because of erratic driving or suspicion of intoxicated driving, it was for tinted windows, which was BS. Things happen, but you learn from it."
What did Edwards learn, exactly? To keep the factory tint on the Land Rover?
The New York Jets receiver wins this battle with ease. Vick's situation is complicated and he's not particularly adept at describing it. I'm fine with that. There's a degree of respect that I have for his inability to pander. It wouldn't come across as sincere anyway, so why bother?
Braylon, on the other hand, doesn't have to tiptoe around moral ambiguities. He got a DUI. Man up, say you made a mistake and leave it at that.
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