After 191 games, 183 starts, 6 Pro Bowls, one Super Bowl appearance, and countless unnecessary roughness penalties, Olin Kreutz's days as a Chicago Bear have come to a close. Many of Kreutz's fans, from teammates and coaches to Bears fans at home, are mourning the close to the #57 era.
A column from Dan Bernstein of Chicago.CBSlocal.com shines a different light.
The column is an argument for the "grow up and move on" outlook that all those interested in professional sports must carry. It is well crafted, with good flow and rhythm and strong organization.
What kills me, though, is the capper.
If you've ever written an opinion column, you know how difficult it can be to find the perfect ending. The column's strength and memorability rests almost solely on that closing line. Even the greats know the pressure. Here's what Mike Royko said on the subject during a 1993 interview:
"I sweat out the closer more than I do the lead. I don't worry about the lead. Just get it started somehow, get people into it, and tell the story."
What's great about Bernstein's capper is the way he flips the meaning of one word to change our perspective on a tweet from Chris Harris, and does so in a way that reinforces the rest of the column. It's meaningful, succinct, and packs a punch.