This is all you can really think about after reading Plaxico Burress‘ childish and immature comments on Friday morning. In an interview with Men’s Journal (a publication that has a reputation of just bringing the best out of some of these athletes), Burress fired shots (verbal this time) at his former quarterback and teammate, Eli Manning, and his former head coach, Tom Coughlin. He expressed unhappiness with New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, and he also had some choice words for anyone who took pleasure in seeing him go to prison for shooting himself in the leg after carrying a concealed firearm into a nightclub.
“What are you doing now?” he rhetorically asked those people. “You still mad at your job? You still angry about your life? ‘Cause I’m back living my life and enjoying my family while you’re still doing the same thing.”
The answer, for anyone who wishes to respond, can be in question form: What have you been doing for the past two years? Were you hanging out in your cell all day? Were you staring at the wall, watching the seconds tick off the clock? ‘Cause I was living my life, enjoying the freedoms that are afforded to every single person who doesn’t shoot himself in the leg with a concealed firearm in a nightclub.
But even without a response, Burress revealed a lot about himself in a very short amount of time.
He proved he was bitter and angry at the way the Giants handled his situation (that situation, as a reminder, was that he shot himself in the leg with a concealed firearm in a nightclub), and he proved, in saying “Man, we’re paid too much to be treated like kids,” that he’s slightly delusional.
More than all of that, though, he proved that he doesn’t deserve his second chance.
When you’re imprisoned for such a stupid, stupid crime that could have killed someone but you know that you have a chance to once again earn millions in the NFL, the only words that should come out of your mouth when you exit those gates are “grateful,” “hopeful” and “humble.” It shouldn’t be this:
After my situation happened, I turned on the TV, and the first words out [of Coughlin’s] mouth was ‘sad and disappointing.’ I’m like, forget support — how about some concern? I did just have a bullet in my leg. And then I sat in his office, and he pushed back his chair and goes, ‘I’m glad you didn’t kill anybody!’
Those aren’t the words of a man looking forward to getting back on his feet in the real world; they are the words of a man looking back and still feeling upset that he wasn’t coddled for maybe the first time in his life. The fact that it took a self-inflicted gun wound to get to that point should tell you all you need to know. They’re the words of a player and a man who doesn’t realize how lucky he was to escape further injury or punishment and how lucky he continues to be with his current situation.
Simply, they’re the words of a guy who just doesn’t get it.
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