As a former NFL player, I know how players influence their teams both positively and negatively. What concerns me is the growing trend of players focusing on themselves instead of their team. This is having a negative effect on the NFL and even worse, it is having a negative effect on youth sports players who want to emulate the ego-maniac pro players.
As professional NFL football players, we all have different personalities. Most players have a positive and friendly personality and focus on helping their team. But, there are also players that have large egos and want the spotlight to always be focused on them. These are players like Terrell Owens and Randy Moss. As a former NFL player, I can tell you that ego-maniacs like Terrell and Randy are a cancer to their team and they always cause more damage than good.
However, what really concerns me is the impact these ego-driven players are having on youth. When young players in junior high, high school and college see players like Terrell Owens and Randy Moss in the spotlight and acting like spoiled children, they want to be like them. And to be like these players means focusing on yourself and acting like a jerk instead of focusing on helping your team. As these ego-maniac players become more and more popular, think of how this is going to effect professional sports. It is going to be a cancer that spreads through the NFL, tearing teams apart and making the NFL a circus instead of the greatest team sport of all time.
For the young people who are reading this article, I cannot stress enough how important it is for you to NOT behave like Terrell Owens or Randy Moss. Unfortunately these two players have gotten away with acting like fools because they are such incredible athletes and the best in the world. But, I can guarantee you that if they did not have the talent they have, they would be kicked off of their teams and not recruited to play for a different team. Both players and coaches HATE ego-maniac players.
One of the reasons why players and coaches hate ego-maniacs is that as the season wears on, a team will have many ups and downs. As a player, you need to support your team and do everything you can to help it during both the ups and the downs. Ego-maniacs love it when their team is winning because then they can claim they were responsible for their team’s success. However, when their team is not doing so well, you always see players like Terrell Owens blaming the other players and the coaches for their lack of success. Nothing destroys a team faster than a player blaming his teammates for the team’s lack of success. Just look at all the damage Terrell Owens caused with the Eagles when he was blaming Donovan McNabb for the team’s lack of success. Isn’t it ironic how Donovan McNabb is still on the team when Terrell Owens was suspended and then traded?
On the other hand, what coaches for college and pro teams are looking for are leaders like Brett Favre, LaDainian Tomlinson, and Marvin Harrison. These are the players who stand out and become the biggest NFL stars because they have a great personality, they always behave like professionals, they play to help their team, and they are positive leaders and role models for their teammates. If you want to emulate a pro athlete, emulate the leaders, not the ego-maniacs. You will go much farther in the NFL (or any other pro team), and you will be a positive role model for the young players who someday dream of playing in the pros and who want to be just like you.
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