Leading the good life ... in prison

He hasn’t played a down in a game that counts. He may not play at all this year.

Yet, we hear or read his name daily, and that is not likely going to end anytime soon.

In fact, you may hear Deshaun Watson’s name for several years regardless of whether his career as an on-the-field contributor for the Cleveland Browns lasts 10 years or 10 weeks.

Personally, I’m already sick of it, and not simply because of the charges against Watson – but that’s certainly a part of it I cannot ignore. As many of my faithful reader(s) are aware, I’m sick because Jimmy Haslam has done a real number on the Browns’ future with his handling of the whole Watson "deal", his bungling of Baker Mayfield’s trade value, and, well, Jimmy just being Jimmy.

But not to fret, Jimmy. Take comfort in the fact that there have been other idiots who have excelled in sports only to discover that lots of money doesn’t always make them play nice off the field, either.

I got to thinking about other athletes who had the world by the tail but couldn’t leave well enough alone. Here are a few that come to mind:

O.J. Simpson. Here’s a guy who was on top of the world, but that didn’t stop him from committing murder. And for the longest time, I couldn’t accept his guilt. I mean, how could a guy who was so funny in the "Naked Gun" movie series possibly be a killer? Made no sense. But then, most of his decisions after football were pretty dumb.

Ray Lewis. Here’s a guy who kept his keister out of jail by testifying against two of the participants in the murder of two people Lewis also participated in. Whatever it takes, right, Ray?

This is particularly interesting to Cleveland fans, because I would always ask Browns fans what they thought about Ray Lewis during his playing career, and the answer invariably was along the lines of “Hate him … he’s a murderer.”

People often forget that the Browns – soon to be Ravens – drafted Lewis just before they moved to Baltimore.

Who out there thinks that Lewis, had the team stayed in Cleveland and he’d played as a Brown, would have been viewed a little more forgivingly had the same murder scenario played out? Don’t be shy … raise your hand!

Just as I thought: 100% agreement! (It’s all perspective, ain’t it?)

You know, I just realized that if I’d included Jim Brown, who has a history of sometimes questionable behavior – assuming that tossing women off balconies qualifies as questionable – and Mel Hall, a former Indians player whose sexual shenanigans were not discovered until after his career ended, I could have done an all-Cleveland column.

The crème de la crème is, without question, Trevor Bauer, who was suspended by MLB for 324 games not too long ago, for alleged sexual situations he put women in, without their consent.

Makes Deshaun look like a choir boy. If Trevor still pitched for Cleveland, the outcry would be, well-Deshaun-like. But since he plays for another team, well, no biggie.

Ya just gotta love consistency with sports fans.

Jeff Bing

Lifelong Westlake resident who dabbles in writing whenever the real world permits. My forte is humor and horror...What a combo!

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Volume 14, Issue 15, Posted 10:05 AM, 08.02.2022