Last week, Carolina Panthers center Ryan Kalil (pictured above at Comic Con 2011 because it’s important) took out a full page ad in the Charlotte Observer, promising fans of his team that the Panthers were going to win Super Bowl XLVII. Obviously, with the season still a month away, and the Panthers coming off a 6-10 season, some people responded to that ad with a hearty, “LOLwut?”
On Saturday, though, Kalil backed his words up with some reassurance.
“I knew I’d take some heat for it, and rightfully so. It’s a bold thing to say, especially in such a tough game,” Kalil said. “But what I care about is who I wrote it for and who it was intended for, and that was the fans and my teammates. So in that regard it’s been very positive.” (Via the Sacramento Bee)
My immediate response to this was, “Oh sh*t, the Twitters are going to eat this dude alive.” However, aside from fans of the other NFC South teams and the typical major market loudmouths, most people seem to dig that Kalil did this. It’s probably because it was a gesture to his fan base, which is rare and refreshing, especially when done with the over-the-top aplomb and bravado replaced by passion and respect.
Kalil’s ad inspired me to ask the question, “What would it look like if more players, coaches, and owners reached out to their fans by guaranteeing Super Bowl victories?” So I went ahead and made some newspaper ads for some players and one special owner to use if they so desire.