We’d all love to be a professional football player. The fame, the money, the thrill, what’s better? How can you replicate the feeling of scoring a touchdown in front of 70,000 fans anywhere else?
Well, you can’t. It is great, and no professional athlete will tell you differently. But it’s not all fun and games. As Uncle Ben told Peter Parker, “With great power comes great responsibility,” and in the NFL part of that responsibility is interacting with the media.
Following every game, every practice, an eager parade of journalists from around the city and state pour into the locker room looking for a quote, and the players have to sit there and answer whatever questions come their way. It’s a process that can quickly become repetitive.
“Yeah, pretty much,” Emmanuel Sanders told Eric Goodman and Les Shapiro of Afternoon Drive on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7 on Thursday about whether he receives the same questions every day. “What are you guys going to do when you run the ball to the right? What are you going to do when you run the ball to the left? How many passes do you want to catch? You going to run the ball? Pass the ball? Run, run, run. Pass, pass, pass. Defense, defense, defense. … I go in with the same answer, based off the questions they ask me, because I know it’s going to be the same question.”
There’s a reason why, as fans, you’re always hearing about the same three or four storylines: Because the media keeps asking about them.
It gets to the point that Sanders will hideout in the training room to avoid any and all contact with the men and women behind such questions.
“I’m never hurt,” Emmanuel said. “You guys never see me. Sometimes I’ll poke my face in here and see if y’all gone. If y’all not gone, I go back in and lay down, I eat, I hang out, just to avoid, ‘Hey Emanuel, you have the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Did you know they’re based out of Florida?’”
And that’s the thing that gets to Sanders most: dumb questions.
“‘So, Emmanuel, when you say you’re frustrated of getting the ball, does that mean you want the ball?,’” Sanders mimicked. “Uh, no, I only play football to block. I wanted to be a wide receiver so I can block all game, 60 plays a game.”
Hear more from Sanders, including talk on the dumbest thing he’s ever seen a teammate buy, in the podcast below…
Catch Afternoon Drive with Goodman and Shapiro Monday-Friday from 4p-6p on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7 or stream live any time for the best local coverage of Colorado sports from Denver’s biggest sports talk lineup.