Paul Kuharsky — who has apparently forged a career on the back of terrible analysis of professional football management — finds Maurice Jones-Drew’s holdout and trade demand “laughable.”
As I’ve written before, MJD’s moral ground is much higher than the Jaguars here. But Kuharsky says MJD is unsympathetic and destined to lose his fight with the team:
“[The Jaguars] need … [a] partner willing to trade for a disgruntled player demanding a lucrative new contract. … [H]e’s set up to root against his teammates and hope they don’t succeed. What an excellent teammate!”
First, many people — including, apparently, sports journalists — seem to think that ‘disgruntled’ is a four-letter word. It just means ‘unsatisfied.’ I can’t say I blame the NFL rushing leader for being a bit unsatisfied that he’s saddled with a bad quarterback, bad fellow skill players, and a mediocre offensive line — not to mention terrible management that picked all those players and won’t give the NFL rushing leader a decent payday! So yes, MJD has a right to be disgruntled.
Second, with the exception of all five of the Jaguars’ fans — whose opinions are discounted not only by the fact that they are invested in this situation, but also by the fact that they had the poor judgment to root for the Jaguars — I don’t see why anyone would think any less of MJD for this trade demand. MJD has poured five years of his brief football career into this abominable team. He played through a time-share with Fred Taylor, played through 5-11 years with terrible teammates, and almost never missed a game. He also rarely complained publicly — until this preseason, when his awful team refused to spend a fraction of their $25 million in cap space to give his earnings a bump.
If MJD gets his payday and then produces disappointing numbers, then roast him. Until then, find a dictionary and look up ‘disgruntled.’