Bob Costas gets a reprieve this week (although, for the record, the complete 180 he did this past Sunday while commenting on the Josh Brent situation earns him the honor of being a total pussy…that, or he overcorrected because he fears The Machine, in which case, smart move).
No, this week we focus our attention on Brandon Jacobs, the suspended (soon to be former) 49ers RB. Oh Brandon, 10 months ago you were on top of the world: you just won your second Super Bowl with the G-Men, you became the Giants all-time leader in rushing touchdowns, and, even though you’re on the wrong side of 30, teaming up with Ahmad Bradshaw ensured some added longevity and a real shot at getting a third ring and a chance at football immortality. But no, Brandon was disgruntled by his diminished playing time (note: you know someone’s a total d-bag when they’re on a championship team complaining about playing time) and it was apparent he was not coming back.
So, curiously, Brandon signed with the Niners in the offseason. Yes, the same Niners that have the no doubt undisputed #1 RB in Frank Gore, quality backups in Kendall Hunter and Anthony Dixon, and rookie LaMichael James. If he was pissed about sharing time with Bradshaw, how was he going to handle an orgy in the backfield? Yes, this had train wreck written all over it. The Machine snuggled in and waited for the crazy.
And so, 13 games into his first season that resulted in five carries for seven yards (a solid 1.4 yards per carry) the train made its final stop in Crazytown. Brandon, clearly upset with his lack of opportunities and placement on the depth chart, did what any upstanding professional would do: he complained on social media, saying he was “rotting away” on the bench and calling this season his worst, and then, in total buyer’s remorse fashion, posted pictures of his Super Bowl ring and himself playing for the Giants. This prompted the Niners to suspend Jacobs for the rest of the season (without pay), and it’s likely they won’t bring him back for the playoffs, and almost certainly he won’t be suiting up for them next year. While normally you’d feel bad about someone losing their job, here, it feels so good for many reason.
First, complaining about your job on social media is a move reserved for teachers…it’s tough to garner sympathy for someone who’s made millions of dollars playing a game (it’s also hard for The Machine to have sympathy for people that work half the year and get summers off).
Second, this type of petulant, self-absorbed behavior has defined Brandon. When the going gets tough, he quits. A google search will tell you that Brandon went to college at Southern Illinois, not a traditional powerhouse program. However, a beer with The Machine will tell you that he first started out at Auburn, which is a traditional powerhouse program. In the backfield with him at Auburn were future NFL players Cadillac Williams and Ronnie Brown. Instead of staying at Auburn, competing with Cadillac and Ronnie and working his way up the RB ladder, Brandon took his ball and goes to Southern Illinois, a Division I-AA (or whatever it’s called now) school. It’s no wonder why Cadillac and Ronnie became first round draft picks and Jacobs fell to the fourth.
Third, and perhaps more importantly, you knew this was going to happen the moment you left the Giants. Anyone that knows anything about the Giants (we dare you to test The Machine’s knowledge here) knows that, unless your name is Manning, you are a role player. The recent list of former G-Men that left to seek richer pastures and have failed miserably is long and telling: Kevin Boss, Derrick Ward, Steve Smith, Ryan Grant, even Mario Manningham. All of these players left and have had little or no impact. These players thought they were better than they really are, and failed to realize they had a pretty good gig in New York. On the other hand, the Giants plug in players, Jake Ballard (now Martellus Bennent), Victor Cruz, David Wilson, Domenik Hixon) and they don’t miss a beat. It’s as if Coach Coughlin and Jerry Reese know what they’re doing in building a roster with talent and depth.
So Brandon, while you file your inevitable appeal with the NFLPA and begin your quest for social media rehabilitation (look for a feel good story involving Brandon in the upcoming weeks) The Machine hopes you’ve banked away some cash, cause it looks like you’re playing days are over. While some team may be dumb enough to sign you (you can’t teach 6’4”, 264) you’re never going to see the kind of cash you think you deserve. You’re a 30 year old RB with bad knees and an even worse attitude problem. Instead, you’ll see a one year, heavily incentive laden contract…typical for problem child athletes (see TO).
Bottom line: you’re not worth the headache and distraction…but you are worth a Tuesday Teabag. Enjoy.