The Jay Cutler comments about DeAngelo Hall are a huge NON-STORY.
THERE IS NO CONTROVERSY HERE. Move on, media. Give it up.
There was no “bulletin board material” nor any “shots fired” this week. I don’t care, and neither should you.
Yet this non-controversy is making the tops of homepages for news outlets everywhere.
I know that we in the media often blow things out of proportion; especially on slow news days, in order to get more ratings/page views/sell papers etc. Media outlets owned by professional leagues or professional teams do this almost everyday. And these specific television networks do it on an even larger scale.
However, this Jay Cutler vs. DeAngelo Hall script is a huge waste of all our of time. Cutler was as vanilla and boring as he usually is during all his interviews.
Jay Cutler simply referred to Hall as “another player” that’s it. "Just another player."
Hall of course had his jersey sent immediately to the Hall (of Fame in Canton) following the last time he tangled with Jay Cutler. In 2010, Hall set a record for one individual NFL player picking off an individual quarterback in the same game. He intercepted Jay Cutler four times in the Chicago Bears 17-14 loss to the Washington Redskins.
Yardbarker is a network group of which I am a partner. They are owned by Fox Sports. As part of my agreement with Fox and YBN, I host a widget with the top sports news stories of the day on my site’s homepage. Look on the right rail and you’ll see one headline in the widget:
“DeAngelo WHO? Jay Cutler says.”
First off Jay Cutler didn’t actually say that. Secondly, ALL CAPS!?! FOR WHAT??? Jay Cutler certainly did not SCREAM THE WORD WHO! Cutty didn’t say “yeah, Hall got lucky that game, it was a fluke” or “DeAngelo Hall really sucks, I don’t know how he pulled that off.”
Now that would actually be a story– if something like that was actually said.
Secondly, I’m not going to bother linking where that takes you.
It’s too short and very poorly written. The link is TMZ level in its depth and analysis, and blatantly tries to make something out of nothing. Shame on that site for writing it. Bigger shame on Fox Sports and Yardbarker for promoting it.
The Chicago Tribune also wastes our time by making this a headline. However, at least they have it more buried, and much less sensationalized
CBS Chicago also has this non-story up on their page. They look much worse than the Trib here in that they have it right up at the top.
Of course, there are many other media outlets acting like these comments of Jay Cutler actually matter right now.
I get why so many outlets are wasting our time on this: opportunity costs.
I’ve been there. I’ve dealt with this.
I know what it’s like to be forced to stand around and wait, and do absolutely nothing until some multi-millionaire athletes come out and merely grace you with their presence for a few moments. And say nothing but mind-numbing platitudes during that short allotted time. But hey, they finally deemed you worthy of an audience with their highness.
Also during those few moments, some of the local television people will try to dominate the conversation and railroad all your potential questions. Worse yet, don’t get caught in a media horde with CBS 2′s Ryan Baker, ABC 7's Jim Rose or NBC 5’s Peggy Kusinski, because they not only dominate the convo, they force themselves and their own personality into it. Most television reporters do. They're not the only ones. All three are prominent local journos, so it's easy to remember performing this behavior.
This is so the television viewer can then hear the voice of Baker, Rose and/or Kusinksi while trying to watch a video of Jay Cutler or Patrick Kane. Here’s a visual representation of what it’s liked to be packed into a mass of humanity like a sardine can. Twitter account of ABC 7 Rafer Weigel
We are waiting for DRose to get out of the shower pic.twitter.com/0YNHuV5qBe
— Rafer Weigel (@RaferWeigel) October 17, 2013
— Rafer Weigel (@RaferWeigel) October 17, 2013
That’s the media “mosh pit,” or “gangbang” if you wish for cruder words around Derrick Rose.
AT A PRESEASON GAME. It's enough to make you sing Rawhide, because we're herded like cattle!
So to recap, you wait a long time doing nothing, to be squished in by 30 people to hear an entitled millionaire talk but say absolutely nothing for ten minutes. With a PR flak or two standing by watching like a hawk to make sure nothing interesting happens. And if you’re lucky, you may get a question or two of your own answered.
Although that answer will (unless you're talking to Brandon Marshall or Martellus Bennett) be a shopworn cliche.
Given all the energy and time and stress that goes into this process, the sausage being made, you HAVE to make a story out of something. You got to get copy from somewhere after all that effort right? That’s why this Jay Cutler non-story is being spun into a Jay Cutler story.
You know who has this whole situation figured out correctly? DeAngelo Hall that’s who.
Look at what he said about this situation (via the Tribune):
“I don’t know what you want Jay to say,” Hall told reporters in Washington. “‘Oh my God, I’m scared of this guy!’ He’s trying to say I’m another guy. Whether he believes that in his heart or not, that’s what he has to say. He has gone against some great corners in this league. I’m probably not the best guy he ever has gone against.
“I can’t go into it thinking, ‘This is Jay Cutler.’ But for me personally, I feel good about the matchup. I feel good about the things we’re trying to do, defensively, scheme-wise.”
Hall’s comments are a non-story as well.
But he tells it exactly like it is. Because he knows.
Here in Chicago, Jay Cutler has Media Relations professionals like Jim Christman constantly feeding him the exact correct bullshit to say. That’s his job, to make sure the player gives you nothing but lies and air-kissed platitudes. Over in D.C. Hall has the Redskins equivalent of Christman similarly training him to say nothing but corporatespeak, lies and meaningless buzzwords at every media availability.
DeAngelo Hall and Jay Cutler are instructed to never make headlines for what they say.
Only for how they play. They didn’t say anything headline-worthy yesterday. Much to many journalists’ dismay.
So please make this non-story go away!
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net, an affiliate of Fox Sports. He’s also a regular analyst on news talk radio stations across the world; with weekly segments on NBC and Fox Sports Radio. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks) and RSS
Type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.