Yesterday, sentient port-a-potty and erstwhile illusionist Gregg Doyel blogged a column in response to Jimmy Graham breaking the "Jimmy Graham Rule" twice in the Saints' preseason
scrimmage game against Tennessee. From inside his office very near to the core of the sun, Doyel began thusly:
There's individuality, and there's me-first anarchy — and there's a big difference between the two. Jimmy Graham veered into the anarchist's cookbook on Friday night when he scored a touchdown and celebrated by dunking over the goal posts. And then scored another touchdown and celebrated by dunking again over the goal posts.
Oh wow. Oh man. Jimmy Graham, you done fucked up now, didn't you? You, sir—a freak human specimen whose particular skill set defies traditional position nomenclature—eschewed the rule of law and conformity for a petty display of enthusiasm. You, sir, flouted the absurdity and arbitrary ham-fist of Roger Goodell's prescription that dunking over the goal posts is now against the rules of professional football. You, Jimmy Graham, single-handedly gave us a glimpse of the rudderless ship of anarchy by drawing not one, but two fifteen-yard penalties. You, Mr. Petulant Child, should be ashamed of yourself. Why don't you construct and detonate a pipe bomb all over the NFL Rulebook while you're thumbing the anarchist's cookbook?
For context, Doyel reminds us that the "Jimmy Graham Rule" entered the league's Holy Rule Book after Graham warped the goal posts at Atlanta last season, which delayed the professional football game he was participating in for twenty minutes. That's right: fans, networks, and broadcasters were set back almost a half hour (on a Sunday!) while new goal posts were installed at the Georgia Dome. Hmmm … how does Gregggg seem to remember that day (emphasis added)?
[It] was Graham, you might recall, whose goal post dunk at Atlanta brought a damn goal post down, delaying the game for 20 minutes. The NFL responded in the only way it could, by hastily adding a rule that made it illegal to dunk on the goal posts. Celebration and spontaneity is fun, but delaying the game for 20 minutes? Not so much.
We might recall? Why so flippant, Gregg? Of course I recall that. I also recall assholes like you reminding us that Jimmy fucking Graham bent the damn goal post at Atlanta for weeks following that game. I might also recall that the Saints and Falcons are divisional rivals, and Jimmy Graham might have been a little bit jacked to be playing in front of a hostile crowd. Had he harmed any other inviolate goal posts before that day? No. Has he harmed any after that day? Nah. Who will protect the goal posts goddammit? But, please, Gregg, do continue:
That's where the story would have ended, if Jimmy Graham were an adult.
#Actually, the story would have ended had you not popped an anger erection upon seeing Jimmy Graham dunk a football over some goal posts (twice!).
But he's not. He's an a-word, and no, not that one.
Wait, which one?
He's an anarchist, thumbing his nose at the NFL for its rule, breaking it on purpose to send a message—this is what I think of your rule—and then doing it a second time to [sic] second message:
This is what I think of me. I'm Jimmy. And I think it's all Jimmy.
Gregg sure knows a thing or two about narcissism, doesn't he? I'm about 96% positive that he reads these castigation wanks aloud to himself in the mirror every morning. Anyway, let's pay lip service to those in the "I find the no-dunking rule arbitrarily draconian" camp.
At the least this is unattractive, a bad look for Graham that reflects poorly on his coach and team, even if his coach and team don't agree with what he did and even if there are fans—and there are—who think what Jimmy Graham did on Friday night is the coolest thing, like, evar! The NFL told him he can't dunk and he dunked anyway. What a guy! Har!
If that's all this was, an ugly look for Jimmy Graham, everyone could move on. Players—people, me included—make fools of themselves daily. It's the human condition to take what you have and spoil it out of immaturity, stupidity, whatever. See my hand in the air? Been there. Done it. Will do it again.
Ah colloquialism. The easiest way to dismiss your opponents, like, evar! Har! Har har har! Of course he dunked after being told not to. In fact, one might say he posterized the Jimmy Graham rule on Friday night. It's a stupid fucking rule, and Gregg here is simply tapping the stodgy curmudgeon vein that got blown out when Joe Horn pulled a cell phone from the goal posts way back when. Just compare "Theismann's Take" to whatever argle bargle Doyel has concocted for himself:
But this is more than an ugly look for Jimmy Graham. This is a threat to Sean Payton and to the NFL at large, though it's a bigger threat to Payton. What Jimmy Graham did on Friday night wasn't the act of a rebel. It was the act of a petulant child.
See? Jimmy Graham's double foray into anarchy has reached global-threat levels. ARREST THIS MAN. I guess we could give Gregg credit for not leveling the "classless" accusation, but I fail to see how Graham dunking out of protest renders him a "petulant child." Children lack self-awareness. What Jimmy Graham did was an exercise in self-awareness. Who better to run rough-shod over the Jimmy Graham Rule than Jimmy Graham himself? he said. Before a packed Superdome on a Friday night, why not give your beloved fans a show well worth their money? Whatever. Do you have any armchair psychology to dish out, Gregg? Maybe a glimpse into Graham's true motivations?
Graham wasn't just putting down the NFL by dunking the ball over the goal posts. He was elevating himself, putting himself above the league and even his teammates, by doing what he knew would draw a 15-yard penalty — twice. Granted, it's an exhibition game. Doesn't count, all that. But there's a difference between not counting and not mattering. The game on Friday night mattered, all exhibitions do for myriad reasons, and Graham treated it like it mattered most of all to him and his version of anarchy.
Again with the anarchy! Still, how is this anarchy? If anything, Jimmy Graham demonstrated beyond doubt the rule of NFL law. Moreover, Graham didn't elevate himself above the league and his teammates any more than the league elevated Graham by attaching his goddamn name to a rules update. Jimmy merely used the system to abuse the system. He took it upon himself to point out how inane and ad hoc the league's legislative machine is. He got chewed out by his coach, we got the laughs and theatrics, and everyone's better for it. I'll pay Gregg Doyel $50.00 US if Jimmy Graham pulls a flag for dunking during the regular season. $100.00 US for a playoff game. But anyway, tell us why Jimmy Graham is an undisciplined adolescent, Gregg.
Because he's Jimmy, fool. He's Jimmy. And this is all about Jimmy, and apparently will stay all about Jimmy—until someone in authority reminds this petulant child that he's wrong.
That's right: he's Jimmy, fool. And Jimmy's gonna Jimmy until a right and proper authority figure can set him straight.
Image via USA TSI.