I Am “Half-Drake” On Skates

For those of you who have read my blog posts for a while, you know that Drake is one of my favorite artists of all time.  Whether you like him or not, we all have different tastes and I can respect that.  The following comes from one of my favorite songs of his – “Headlines”:

“I might be too strung out on compliments overdosed on confidence, started not to give a fuck and stopped fearing the consequence.”

The reason why I like it so much is because I always hoped that one day I might be able to be so confident that I could get to the point where I could feel that way about myself.  He feels this way about his rapping abilities that he just doesn’t “give a fuck” what you think about him.  Imagine?

I only wish I could get to that point with my skating.

I’ve started to feel that after six months of skating I am no “Drake on skates” and I am not “overdosed on confidence.”  My back feels like it is going to break in two after I have been playing for a while.  Whether it is because I have bad posture in my chair at my 8-to-5 or because I am overweight (I am), or because I simply am not cut out for it – I don’t know.  All I know is that the more that times goes on the more I struggle with a body that doesn’t cooperate with the things that the heart and mind wants it to.

I always hear that “you can do anything you want to if you try hard enough.”  “You can be anything you want to be.”  Of course that’s probably more for kids.  It sucks.  I try to be positive and keep my head up.  I try to push myself to turn that Drake side on but he won’t come out.

As soon as I get out there for twenty to thirty minutes and I twist the wrong way I’m feeling it.  Yet, I’m going to push myself.  The last time I went out and played hockey I was pretty sure I pulled something in my quad but I pushed through as hard as I could.  One leg skating in circles on defense trying to block shots.

Half-Drake.  What is that? “Fearing the consequences?”

I can’t fathom how I get past this.  As winter approaches my skating will be limited due to traveling through bad weather on poor roads.  So what do I do?  Regress?  That’s all I can do.

It’s hard to take all that in.  It’s hard to look at yourself in the mirror and say “hey you can’t skate without hurting yourself.”

Or “hey you can’t referee without hurting yourself.”

Maybe there is something wrong?  Maybe I’m just clumsy.  Maybe I’m not meant to do physical activity.  Getting to this point in my life and coming to that realization is a tough pill to swallow and it may even be a bitter one at that.

If the best I can do is open up my Xbox and load an NHL game, how do I accept that will be the closest I come to playing in a hockey game?  After all the blood, sweat and tears that I’ve spent trying to learn I don’t know how to accept that.  I’m not sure I can.

In the middle of a Chicago Bears – Minnesota Vikings radio broadcast former NFL quarterback and potential Hall of Famer Kurt Warner said that football “is a game of confidence.”

I disagree.

I think all sports are games of confidence.  I think everything having to do with sports revolves around confidence.  As soon as I step on that ice if I’m not confident in my ability I might as well turn right around and get my street clothes on.  However, that’s my problem.  But it’s a dual edged sword.  If I don’t go out there and find something to give me confidence then I’ll never get it.  If I don’t keep skating until I do something positive, what is the point?

I just wonder where is the fun in absolutely struggling?  Yet, if I know that this is a goal I want to achieve how do I quit?  I find myself in a position that there is no answer to solve either question.

I try to find some philosophical answer by looking to the meaning of things and realizing that things are only important if we give meaning to them.

I have to break down the wall.  To build a wall is to limit myself – yet I have to find that confidence to smash through.  Yet it bleeds over into everything else.  I struggle to find positivity on a day to day basis and that hurts too.  Until I can find that “overdose of confidence” I’m going to struggle to find the other side of the wall.

Views First Take – The Six is Upside Down

Hate

When a new Drake album comes out you hear hate.

From the guy on the internet who is so convinced that Drake is nothing but garbage to the kid up the block who says that Kendrick is a better rapper and Drake is just biting off someone else.

Every time something new comes along like “Hotline Bling” and memes come out Drake is more than willing to be the brunt of the joke.  Take the Super Bowl ad for instance.

Hate

Some critics want to say 29 year old Drake is not relatable.  Really?  That’s a poor diss from Drake’s earlier days when rappers wanted to say he came from money.

Thanks to his new track, “Keep The Family Close,” I know Kennedy Road taught Drake not to trust people like that.  When Drake’s mom moved him from Weston Road to a Jewish neighborhood so he could get a better start in life he was looked down on by those he went to school with.  Guess he wasn’t relatable then either?

He dropped out of school to be that kid “Jimmy” on Degrassi High at 15 so he could take care of his mother’s medical bills.  He wasn’t using that money to go buy himself fancy cars, maybe he borrowed his uncle’s car to ride around and pick up girls.

Drake has explored those rumors many times, even in the video for “Started From the Bottom” off of his third album Nothing Was The Same when he shows the street he grew up on and the house that he lived in as a child.

A little over decade ago the rapper year old just left his single mother’s basement to go follow his dream of rapping and provide for her.  With an endorsement from Young Money label founder Lil’ Wayne, Drake took his mix-tape fame and left the friendly confines of his Forest Hill neighborhood.

Some people would never look back – but not Drake.  He’s given back to his community when he could and he’s made people of Toronto proud of their city.  Changing the way the world views the city – becoming the global ambassador for the Toronto Raptors, launching a line of clothing that includes a 6 on it and promoting an OVO fest in his home base.

Love

I’ve heard Drake grow as an artist and as a man through his words and his flows.  He’s still struggling but he’s exploring what it is that has made him.  He explores himself on Views as a man, as a rapper, as an icon for his beloved Toronto (the 9 , “I turn the six upside down, it’s a nine down) and as a partner.  “If I ever loved ya, I’ll always love ya that’s how I was raised” he professes on “Keep The Family Close.”

He’s made good on his promise to his mom to take care of her – even though he claims on “9” that “Momma hit my phone and said rap’s no good, better than her telling me the check’s no good.”  He’s been spotted on “Drake Night” at Raptors games in October with his mom in tow.

There’s too much hate and jealousy in the world.  People need to embrace each other.  Music does that.  Music makes people come together.  There’s so much to break us apart as a nation with elections and politics that when rap can bring races together how can that be wrong?  But when you go out in an OVO owl shirt and someone you don’t know that’s a different race says “hey nice shirt man” that’s love and that’s unity.  That’s what this is about.  It’s bigger than you and I.

Jealousy

Jealousy is just love and hate at the same time right Aubrey?

You know because you see him on Instagram doing this or on Twitter with this person.  He may have some flash, but at 20 something years old, you didn’t want that if you could have it?  Am I jealous of Drake?  No.  Do I wish I could do some of the things he does?  Maybe.  I’d love to shoot hoops with Steph Curry and make curry with Chef Curry but I don’t have to have all the other things.  Drake is where he’s at because he worked and he’s been grinding to get here.  Views points back to those roots but explores where he is. On Weston Road Flows he thinks “back when we couldn’t buy pizza cause we were down to pennies,” but now  “I’m happiest I can buy what I want.”  I would think most people would admit that they know the feeling.

Redemption

As Drake looks around at all he’s gained over the years, he looks at what he’s lost as well.  Those who left and gained something from their time with him while he is left wondering if he lost a piece of himself in the process.  On Redemption he wonders if “Redemptions on your mind when you think about me, oh please give me time,’cause I’m searchin’ for these words to say to you right now.”  Of all the songs, this seems to be the one where he opens himself the most, he gives us just enough, “I wonder when my shit drop do they listen?  Wonder if they’re second guessin’ their decisions?”  He exposes his wounds just a little bit more when he waxes “they would sell my secrets for a tropical vacation, sell my secrets back to me if I was payin’ who’s gonna save me when I need savin’?”  It’s amazing to see such a brash, ambitious and cocksure rapper open up himself after such rhymes like “Back to Back” and “Charged Up” last summer.

Views

Is Drake about himself?  Maybe?  Is Drake about his city?  You could say that.  Is Drake about his “day ones.” I could make a case for that argument.  More than anything Drake is about the music.  Since the time he started rapping he’s devoting his time, his energy and his life into his music.  That’s what this is about.  That’s what Views is about, the music and rap.  Whatever you want to call it, this is his most sincere production yet.  With big sound coming from the lyrics (some guest spots but only enough to keep the flow going), 40’s fingerprints all over the production and an album that I anticipated heavily and I haven’t been let down by.  I’m not worried about Drake being a political activist, I don’t need my favorite artist to tell me what I need to do to save the environment or be some sort of movement starter.  That’s not me.  I want Views.

Would You Quit Professional Baseball For Your Child?

On March 15, Adam LaRoche walked away from the Chicago White Sox on principle.  He walked away from the game he loved because upper management informed him that no longer could he bring his 14-year-old son to the White Sox clubhouse as often as he wanted.  White Sox executive vice president Ken Williams informed him that he had to limit the amount of time his home-schooled son Drake had to the club’s spring training activities.

As it turns out, Drake had been coming to his dad’s spring training back to his days with the Washington Nationals some five years ago without any issues with coaches, players or management having issues.  All that changed when Williams brought Drake’s presence in the clubhouse to the forefront as an issue.

So LaRoche made a decision that certainly doesn’t come easy for an athlete.  Choose the team and the pursuit of a championship or choose your family?

LaRoche chose his son and on March 18, 2016 White Sox pitcher Chris Sale walked to his locker room to find autographed Adam and Drake LaRoche jerseys hanging at Sale’s locker.

Adam decided to walk away but not before leaving his ace pitcher and supportive teammate a note – “Thanks for everything.  I’ll never forget you.”

For his part, Drake was just as gracious – “Chris, thank you for taking care of me.”

Sale took his case to Williams on behalf of LaRoche, because they felt that it was unfair, even taking it so far as to say Drake was part of team referencing his maturity and his appearance on the field during drills.

Adam doesn’t seem like the guy that wanted to cause a stir in the clubhouse however on March 18, he released a statement on Twitter where he talked about his retirement:

Over the last five years, with both the Nationals and the White Sox, I have been given the opportunity to have my son with me in the clubhouse. It is a privilege I have greatly valued. I have never taken it for granted, and I feel an enormous amount of gratitude toward both of those organizations.

Though I clearly indicated to both teams the importance of having my son with me, I also made clear that if there was ever a moment when a teammate, coach or manager was made to feel uncomfortable, then I would immediately address it. I realize that this is their office and their career, and it would not be fair to the team if anybody in the clubhouse was unhappy with the situation. Fortunately, that problem never developed. I’m not going to speak about my son Drake’s behavior, his manners, and the quality of person that he is, because everyone knows that I am biased. All of the statements from my teammates, past and present, should say enough. Those comments from all of the people who have interacted with Drake are a testimony to how he carries himself.

Prior to signing with the White Sox, my first question to the club concerned my son’s ability to be a part of the team. After some due diligence on the club’s part, we reached an agreement. The 2015 season presented no problems as far as Drake was concerned. (My bat and our record are another story!)

With all of this in mind, we move toward the current situation which arose after White Sox VP Ken Williams recently advised me to significantly scale back the time that my son spent in the clubhouse. Later, I was told not to bring him to the ballpark at all. Obviously, I expressed my displeasure toward this decision to alter the agreement we had reached before I signed with the White Sox. Upon doing so, I had to make a decision. Do I choose my teammates and my career? Or do I choose my family? The decision was easy, but in no way was it a reflection of how I feel about my teammates, manager, general manager or the club’s owner Jerry Reinsdorf.

The White Sox organization is full of people with strong values and solid character. My decision to walk away was simply the result of a fundamental disagreement between myself and Ken Williams.

 

Simply put, LaRoche directs the blame on Williams for breaking the contract AND trust that he came to with Williams and the White Sox.  If his play was suspect, which he no doubt discusses in his explanation, then go to him about that.  But it feels like the attempt was a dirty ploy.

Was this a dirty ploy to get $13 million that he was owed off the books?  Or was this a dirty ploy to get the players to rally together and hate management and play for each other in one of those “rah rah let’s win one for Adam and Drake” things?  If so, both are poorly thought out and really bad ideas.  The Major League Baseball Players Association is now getting involved and that can only bring some sort of bad publicity for the club as well.  One this is for certain, this won’t be good for Williams or club chairman Jerry Reinsdorf.

I can’t say for sure what I would do if I was in the same position as Adam LaRoche.  I would like to think I would give up my spot on an MLB team for my daughter.  If I was set money-wise like it seems LaRoche is and comfortable with my position in the game’s history.  If the club isn’t going to respect our agreement on bringing her to spring training and letting her be around, what else would they want to cut out of my contract?

Some may say that LaRoche quit on his teammates, but apparently they aren’t seeing how much he means to them.  Or maybe they don’t see the bigger picture, if the club is going to cut out its promises to one player to bring his son to spring training, a teenager who did nothing to disturb the club at all, then what else are they going to cut? Isn’t it like the owner of the Indians in the movie Major League, Rachel Phelps?  Phelps begins cutting luxuries from the Indians (hot water and a private jet for instance) in order to make the club lose so that they are less profitable and she can move them to Miami.  Who wants to play for someone like that?  Maybe Adam LaRoche was right?  If you had the choice what would you choose?

Boy I Love Losing Super bowls

Recently I saw an advertisement for ESPN’s 30 for 30 “Four Falls of Buffalo.”  30 for 30 films are the greatest sports documentaries I’ve ever seen.  They cover every sport, they draw you in and whether you think you care about the topic or not, you find yourself watching the whole thing. However, this one was about everything for me.  It was about a team that most outside of New York State could care less about (mostly the far Western side of the state) and a team that was labeled the “loveable losers” for the years they went to “back-to-back-to-back-to-back” Super Bowls.  I know Drake wrote “Back to Back” but let’s see him do “Back to Back to Back to Back!”

I’ve been a Bills fan for as long as I can remember.  Well, for as long as I’ve been a professional football fan.  Growing up in the South there was not a lot of love for the Atlanta Falcons at the time, they were horrible and my team was the University of Tennessee Volunteers.  The Big Orange.  Southeastern Tennessee was close to Knoxville and my neighbor was a huge Vol fan. For all I knew he probably was a booster but he bled Orange and decked me out in Orange and turned on the radio on Saturdays so I could hear all about the Volunteer Navy and Smokey.  Yes, I know the words to Rocky Top, I have been to Vols games and I’m not sure that color Orange is right for everyone.  But I digress.

I got into card collecting as I got older and we moved around the South.  I starting looking for baseball and basketball cards everywhere I could find them.  Gas stations used to carry them, grocery stores had them with the candy bars and I used to visit a sports card shop or two when I could.   My father, being a Hokie, wasn’t too thrilled about my Volunteer Orange hanging in the closet.  So when he had the chance he took me to Blacksburg and started introducing me to Virginia Tech football.

Picking through a box of cards I found a stack of football cards, which I had never been collecting before, but my dad had been.  I didn’t know any of the players but I stumbled upon some guy who was a rookie and when I flipped it over it said he was from Norfolk and he went to Virginia Tech. So I started asking my dad about him.  After that, I made my mind up that I was going to be a Bills fan.

I’ve been a Bills fan through the greatest team ever era; that included my heroes: Bruce Smith, Andre Reed and Darryl Talley just to name a few. We navigating around Todd Collins long enough to realize that we miss Jim Kelly. Past the forgettable Rob Johnson vs. Doug Flutie debate that Wade Phillips had. Flutie clearly was the better starter from where I sat. Oh and here’s where it all starts to get murky. Are you ready? Alex Van Pelt, J.P. Losman, Drew Bledsoe, Kelly Holcomb, Trent Edwards, Ryan Fitzpatrick, E.J. Manuel, Jeff Tuel, Thad Lewis, Kyle Orton, Matt Cassel and finally current starter Tyrod Taylor.  The Tyrod Taylor that I was thrilled to find they signed, only because I was ready to give up after the signing of Rex Ryan.

Yes I said give up.

“But you can’t be a true fan,” some might say.

Or “give up just because of the coach?”

Buffalo could have signed anyone and truly, I mean ANYONE.  I don’t mean to scream, but maybe I do.   I saw how the Jets were under his leadership and I wasn’t impressed.  For a team that was supposed to have a great defensive mind, the Bills never seemed to have too much trouble getting past them last year.  I didn’t want him to come in and wreck what was a great Bills ‘D.’

But it’s been wrecked.  Jim Schwartz was let go from his defensive coordinator spot and Ryan has put himself in place as head of the defense. Thru 13 games this year the defensive stats aren’t pretty.  358.8 average ypg (20), 3,300 total yards given up (20), 253.8 passing ypg (22), 104.9 rushing ypg (14). Last year’s defense ranked 4th in total ypg, 3rd in total passing yards given up and 11th in rushing yards given up. 124 penalties were amassed over a full season, through 13 games there have been 109 this season. If I were a betting man I’d say that stat will go up, way up.

The defense that was lean and mean is now sloppy and punch drunk.  They are boisterous and complain about penalties, like Rex Ryan did after the Eagles game just recently when he followed the officials off the field running his mouth all the way.  He ran his mouth to the New York media week in and week out last year becoming one of the favorite mouthpieces to get a quote.  This year he’s wanted nothing more than provide quotes about Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots wanting to give the newspapers enough words to fill half a page only to lose both games.  I can’t believe he hasn’t learned his lesson by now and I can’t believe Doug Whaley hasn’t reined him in by now.  It feels to me his hiring was for publicity to sell some tickets or to move some shirts.  I hope management is happy.  They went from a potential playoff team to a “not gonna make the playoffs” team.

Funny, I could stick by a team that busted its ass and tried it’s hardest to win a game with a coach that was clueless but at least he wasn’t out there blaming the refs every week and burying his head in the sand.  Chan Gailey wasn’t the best coach the Bills ever had but I would gladly have him back, at least he didn’t run his mouth about the Patriots before the Bills played them.  Even for all his faults Doug Marrone did a better job of giving me a warm and fuzzy feeling.  Alright, no.  Let’s say he gave me a lukewarm feeling.  But damn, at least I didn’t feel like secretly he wanted to coach for Bill Belichick like Rex.  Anymore I think it’s Rex’s secret desire to coach for Belichick that’s why he talks about him so much.  As Drake says “Jealousy is just love and hate at the same time.”

I haven’t fully given up on the Bills.  I threatened to go out in the yard and burn everything Buffalo I owned.  I was mad and out of control.  I’ve come this far, I’ve gone through all those years with all those years of missed playoffs and terrible play.  I wasn’t expecting the team to compete for a Super Bowl.  I wasn’t expecting anything major.  Of course, outside of Buffalo no one really knows much about the team anyway.

 

Drizzy Drake Rogers

“I know way too many people here right now,” the hook, man the hook! NBA 2k11. There was this song I had no idea who this rapper/singer was but this kept coming back to me and I couldn’t turn it off. I was late to the 2k11 scene so by the time I picked it up half of North America already knew the artist known as Drake. I’m looking on the screen and seeing the name Drake and I’m scratching my head.

“Drake?”

So I google it and I see there’s this song “Headlines.” So I think “this is new Drake ill check it out.”

“I might be too strung out on compliments,
overdosed on confidence
Started not to give a fuck
and stopped fearing the consequence
Drinking every night
because we drink to my accomplishments
Faded way too long,
I’m floatin’ in and out of consciousness
And they saying I’m back,
I’d agree with that
I just take my time with all this shit,
I still believe in that
I had someone tell me I fell off,
ooh I needed that
And they want to see me pick back up,
well, where’d I leave it at?
I know I exaggerated things,
now I got it like that
Tuck my napkin in my shirt
cause I’m just mobbin’ like that
You know good and well that you don’t want a problem like that”

Holy hell. Mind. Blown. Just blown. Watching the video I see he’s from Canada and I’m like “wow, this guy is amazing.” So I go and download the Take Album from Amazon. Then I go get the “Thank Me Later” album and I search Datpiff for all the Drake mixtapes I can find. Comeback Season, So Far Gone. I couldn’t get enough.

The beats the hooks I was sucked in. But I didn’t listen, I mean really listen.

Nothing Was The Same. If You’re Reading This Its Too Late.

Looking back at him when he was just 23, talking to Katie Couric, when Find Your Love came out and he’s talking about being himself.

“I’m proud of myself. I’m a great judge of character.”
“I’m me.”
“I’m comfortable with who i am.”
“Be you.”

She goes on to ask him questions about Lil’ Wayne, his views on his music, his mom and of course women.  An only child who writes about the things that he knows, the things that he’s gone through, not about the things that he pretends to know.  I once had an English professor in college tell me that the best writers are the ones that pour themselves out about the things that they’ve been through.  How can you truly describe something unless you’ve seen it?  How do you talk about the Grand Canyon unless you’ve seen it?  Yeah it’s a large hole in the ground but what’s it really like?  I don’t know, never been there.  But if you’re asking me what Madison Square Garden is like during a Rangers game, that I can tell you.

When If You’re Reading This Its Too Late came out, I think maybe my appreciation of Drake may have hit an all time high.  The artistry on the “mixtape” if you want to call it that is absolutely amazing.  Legend just slowly kicks out of the gate with this slow beat and Drake just hammers the hook and catches me with one of my favorite lyrics, “on my way, money taught me Spanish, make it andale.”

I think between this and the following song Energy, I never got to further for a long time.  But I was missing out on so much.  Now & Forever is one of his finest slow songs,

“I don’t wanna miss the boat, I don’t wanna sit in coach,
I don’t wanna sit at home, I gotta get where I’m going.
I’m afraid that I’mma die before I get where I’m going,
I know I’mma be alone, I know I’m out on my own.”

Absolutely amazing.  But there’s so much on that album, his You & The 6, his song to his mom.  After I listened to the album and listening to the lyrics, I heard how much he’s grown as a man and as an artist.  I go back and look at the Drake in the Take Care album and he was talking about YOLO but in IYRTITL, Jungle

“She said you’re my everything,
I love you through everything, I done did everything to her,
She forgave me for everything, this a forever thing
Hate that I treated like it’s a whatever thing
Trust me girls, this shit is everything to me
She from the jungle, she from the jungle
I take somebody else’s car, drive there undercover
This shit is everything to me, this shit is everything
Don’t know where we stand, I used to hit you ’bout everything
Are we still good?  Are we still good?
Are we still good?  Are we still good?…

These days these new girls, they got me nervous
They go to school and do bottle service
They can’t decide, they keep switching majors
Being indecisive makes me anxious
Call your number and it’s out of service
Who can I call for your information?
What am I supposed to do after we done everything that we’ve done
Who is your replacement?”

What makes it amazing for me is to see this expansion of his work.  He’s made it so far from Aubrey Graham, that kid from the Forest Hill section of Toronto, but he’s not left Toronto, in fact he celebrates where he comes from.  A lot of people get money, get famous and leave home never to come back.  Drake blows up Toronto on IYRTITL, calling it the 6, and the people of Toronto have adopted it and even the athletes as well.  He’s become a global ambassador for the Raptors, who have given him a Drake Night as well as featuring his signature October’s Very Own Owl logo on playoff shirts and gear.  Recently Mitchell & Ness released OVO products featuring designs that Drake inspired for the brand and the Raptors.  Drake said 5 years ago in his interview with Katie Couric that Lil’ Wayne would be the icon for his generation and that everyone would know him and his picture would be everywhere.  But I don’t think he realized where he would be.  Drake transcends himself, he transcends his genre, his image, everything he’s involved in.  He’s bigger than the music.  It seems like everyone wants to know what he’s thinking, what’s he’s about, what’s he’s into.  But it’s all there in his music.  He’s let us into himself in so many ways.  It’s amazing that he can pour himself into the music that much.  He’s opened his heart on so many tracks and made it sound so incredible.  Each time you go back and listen to older albums you see his growth and his struggle to grow as a man.  His struggle with the fame and his hope for his mom to be happy while at the same time, his hope to be understood in a world where rappers are only acceptable when they are rapping about money, women and guns.  But he’s so much bigger than that.  His heart is bigger than the 6, but it’s that love, that heart that makes him an amazing artist, that propels him to be the best, and that’s what he is, that’s why he’ll always be the best.

Ain’t No Turnin’ Back

Sometimes you can look around the sports world and think to yourself “yeah they get it, they know they are lucky to be where they are.”  Someone is giving back to the community, they aren’t putting themselves above everyone else, they aren’t abusing their status or they aren’t just taking advantage of everything.

Sometimes you can looking around the sports world and ask yourself “is it just going to hell?”  We see it in the newspapers and online websites, athletes on drugs, drunk driving, illegal weapons possession, drug dealing and a long list of things that most people can’t imagine even doing.

Coming up is the NFL Draft and I keep asking myself about that number one pick.  Ya know Jameis, and all the stories that swirl around him.  From the alleged stolen soda, soda taken in ketchup cups from a fast food establishment, to the accusation of stolen crab legs, the story went from he “forgot” to pay for them to this week he told Coach Harbaugh that a guy at Publix “hooked them up” with a birthday cake before and so he thought he could just get free crustaceans.  There are the other big allegations of sexual assault that have been brought before criminal and civil court, the criminal charges have been dropped but the civil are yet to be tried.

It still appears that Tampa Bay, with the number one pick, are betting on Jameis’ talent and football IQ to lead them to the Lombardi Promised Land.  The Florida based team is projected to dump buckets of cash on the former Florida State quarterback with their first pick in the NFL draft even though questions exist about Jameis’ decisions off the field.

We’ve seen multiple players let the money and bad decision making lead them to terrible consequences starting with one of the worst most recent cases: Aaron Hernandez (Murder), Rae Carruth (Conspiracy to commit murder, shooting into an occupied vehicle, etc), Mike Vick (Dog Fighting/Unlawful Animal Cruelty), Adrian Peterson(Indicted by a grand jury on a felony charge of reckless or negligent injury to a child for using a branch to spank his son in Spring, Texas, in Ma), Ray Rice (Arrested and charged with simple assault after he allegedly struck fiancée Janay Palmer in an Atlantic City casino elevator. A grand jury indicted him on a more serious count of aggravated assault in March), Josh Brent (Charged with intoxication manslaughter after he flipped his car in accident that killed teammate Jerry Brown in Irving, Texas) and many more.

In fact, why don’t you go here and look it up for yourself?  No really, look at the names.  Make decisions for yourself.  Question it for yourself.  Ask yourself questions about all the things that happen.  We look at Jameis (and I’m not letting him off the hook) but he’s not the only one here.  He’s just joining a league where everybody else is doing something too.  No one else is perfect.  Maybe he’s just joining a group of somebodies that are getting away with some things too.  I mean who knows how many on that list are getting away with walking out of a store with something free because they are playing for an NFL team.  Maybe someone is going to a restaurant and getting a free meal?  Why?  Is it just because it draws crowds to that restaurant that the quarterback of the local NFL team eats there?  So the owner says hey, you eat free?  So why are we yelling at Jameis for doing something that someone else is doing?

Maybe it’s like “The Resistance” by Drake:

“I’m living inside a moment, not taking pictures to save it, I mean, how could I forget?

My memories never faded.  I can’t relate to these haters, my enemies never made it.

I am, still here with who I started with.

The game needed life, I put my heart in it.

I blew myself up, I’m on some martyr shit,

Carry the weight for my city like a cargo ship….

Man I couldn’t tell you where the fuck my head is

I’m holdin’ on by a thread it’s like I’m high right now

The guy right now

And you could tell lookin in my eyes right now

That nothin’ really comes as a surprise right now

Cause we just havin’ the time of our lives right now….

Did I just trade free time for camera time?

Will I blow all of this money baby, hammer time?

Yeah, I just need some closure

Ain’t no turnin’ back for me I’m in it ‘til it’s over”

There ain’t no turnin’ back for him now.  He’s burned a lot of bridges.  He’s coming out now.  It’s in it to win it.  He’s going all in.  So when he gets there, he’s going to be loved or hated, pretty much like before.  What’s changing?  He’s just going to be a pro.  More money, more problems.  Problem is, now it’s even more reported, even more microscopes even more to lose.  If he’s trying to do better than good enough, it’s time to change.  It’s time not to be better than same rut that all those guys in that rut got stuck in.  Time to take in all that advice all those guys have been trying to tell him.  Ain’t no turnin’ back yeah, but it might be too late, it might be over.