Earlier this week former Dallas Cowboy Greg Ellis was interviewed on KESN in Dallas and had quite a bit to say on incoming rookie Michael Sam. Ellis believes Sam should have come out as an unproven rookie and should have waited until he played like a Peyton Manning because, “We’re going to overlook that because we’re trying to win football games,” thus proving the old NFL adage, no one cares who you are or what you are, as long as you win games. The league is almost the embodiment of a shark in that regard and this revelation is nothing new to anyone who has ever followed football for more than five minutes.
What the former defensive end Ellis most seems concerned about? Butt patting.
From the interview:
If he can make it through that first initial wave. If he can get out there — he doesn’t need to say anything. He needs go in there, close his mouth and play football to let the guys know that, ‘Hey if you guys give me a chance to welcome me into this fraternity of this football team, I can contribute and help us win football games.’ That’s going to be his best approach in my opinion. Because the little things you have to look at. If he pats somebody on the butt — I hope ESPN don’t get mad and never have me back — but if he pats somebody on the butt, how is that to be received? If he does that how is that to be received? If he said, ‘Come on baby’? I called guys baby all the time on the football field, but when you have taken a stand and went and go public and say that, ‘I am gay,’ how is that going to be received? I’ve seen guys, I had guys on the Dallas Cowboys football team — I won’t mention names — who did not want you to pat them on their butt. So God forbid if you pat one of those guys on the butt it’s going to be a major problem.
Here’s the thing: DON’T JUST SWAT PEOPLE ON THE ASS.
See? It’s not hard. He already said there were straight (or maybe gay, we don’t know) players on the Cowboys who didn’t want their ass swatted. My guess that a good 98% of the population — regardless of gender identification or sexual preference — do not want their ass to be touched by a coworker. I don’t care how tight the bond is on the football field, random ass touching has nothing to do with the game of football or life in general.
Ever touch a stranger’s ass? The last time I accidentally touched some stranger’s ass, it was horrifying. Was walking out of Costco with my husband and I reached over and hooked my fingers on his back pocket so we wouldn’t get separated in the throngs of people rushing to the hot dog and stuffed-diabetes chicken alfredo roll line. But instead of his pocket, I accidentally grabbed some stranger’s pocket. When I realized what I had done, I was mortified. This poor dude didn’t need me touching his ass, my husband was now annoyed I had grabbed the wrong person, and now we’ve got a terrible uncomfortable situation where everyone is apologizing to everyone else for not respecting personal boundaries.
Now imagine that, but I patted the stranger’s butt? Now I’ve harassed someone. Imagine it in the workplace. Loss of employment and possibly a lawsuit.
What is it about the butt that makes it so important to touch in the NFL? Is it because athletes have been conditioned to be patted on their butt from the time they first picked up a football? I’ve played a fair amount of team sports in my day, but I cannot think of a single time someone has patted me on the ass to get me to perform. Ellis acknowledges there are already guys in the league who don’t like their butts touched, so why would someone gay or straight suddenly feel the need to touch these people’s butts if they know others hate it? Gay people are jerks who cannot resist butts like paleo dieters cannot resist eating steak and then telling you about how they only eat steak?
So for the Greg Ellises of the world, here is a simple guide for where you can and cannot touch another football player outside of the field of play.
Hair: Never. Insensitive to Drew Brees, Peyton Manning and players without Head & Shoulders contracts.
Cupping balls: Never. Not even appropriate in the locker room to creep out/throw off sportswriters, as much as we would like to see Peter King retch publicly.
Butts: Never. Football isn’t for little love taps.
Knees: Sitting on the bench and you need to get someone’s attention or offer a quick touch of support. GENTLY. We don’t need anyone blowing out an ACL/MCL on a knee rub.
Feet: The Rex Ryan Rule of Feet Jokes.
Chest: Chest bumps or taunting. At player’s discretion.
Face: Forehead-to-forehead ONLY when both players are wearing helmets for everyone’s safety. NO ESKIMO KISSES.
Want to show support: Hand on the shoulder.
Sympathy: Hand on the shoulder, possibly arm around shoulder.
Excitement: Fist-bump or high-five.
$25,000 fine for excessive celebration: Hip bump.
See? It’s not that difficult, Ellis. No one is going to just touch your butt. That is, unless they win you football games.
[H/T KESN via Dallas News.]