A Brief Moment of Grace and Civility

I love football.

On fall weekends after I get some projects done I’m normally parked on the couch or at the bar watching my favorite college or pro teams. Yesterday was one of those days that reminded me of why I like football so much.

Love him or hate him - Tom Brady is hands down the best quarterback the league has ever produced.

I was attending Michigan State when he started playing for Michigan so I’ve watched him through his whole career. I thought he should have retired last year after winning his seventh Super Bowl but this season he’s rocking it out like he always does.

Hey, if it means he gets another Super Bowl and I get to see drunk Brady chucking trophies on boats then I’m all for it.

Drunk Tom Brady on a boat is the best Tom Brady

Yeah, so yesterday this guy threw his 600th touchdown. I want to repeat that - a six with two zeros after it - six zero zero. What an absolute legend this guy is. In baseball there have only been nine players to ever hit 600 home runs. In hockey, there has only been twenty players to score 600 goals. In football, only Tom Brady has scored 600 touchdowns.

After Mike Evans got the pass from Brady to score the touchdown against a hapless Chicago Bears defense he ran to the endzone and, not realizing what a historic achievement that football represented, he handed it off to Byron Kennedy - a fan from St. Petersburg, Florida.

Umm, that’s history there, buddy. It belongs in the Smithsonian.

Tom Brady wanted that ball as a souvenir and a Bucs staffer went over to ask if Kennedy would consider giving up the ball. I was laughing watching the conversation play out yesterday on live tv. Even the Lib of the House was into this drama.

Now, this guy if he had wanted to could have just kept that ball. There was no one that could have taken it back from him. But in a rare moment of civility, he gracefully handed that ball to the Bucs staffer after a short conversation. I’m still a little unclear of what he received in return for it because different outlets and have reported different things but I think he got another ball and a signed jersey from Brady.

Both announcers agreed that whatever he was offered, it was most likely a terrible deal.

But that’s precisely why what he did was such a great act. It was respectful of one of the greatest athletes the league has produced, it was respectful of the game itself, and it was one guy just being a decent human rather than a greedy douchebag. Because as much as I hate the NFL as an organization I have real respect for people that play and love the game. Kennedy seems like one of those guys, too.

It was a great Sunday and a great moment (although I’m sure our editor @ElderBartleby was sad to see his beloved Chicago Bears get wrecked yet again. Not shaming as I grew up with the Lions who blew their lead against the Rams yesterday as former Lion’s QB Stafford demolished his former team to make them 0-7 this season)

Have a great week, everybody.