We’re drawn to him like moths to a flame. I know that a top flight, legitimate #1 wide receiver is as rare in Chicago as an orange and blue unicorn, but the micro-analysis of Brandon Marshall has officially jumped the shark. The Chicago Bears’ biggest offseason acquisition is constantly under the microscope and he hasn’t played a single down in the Orange and Blue. Everyone is intrigued by Brandon Marshall, but it’s gotten a little out of hand.
The Chicago Tribune had investigative reporter Jared Hopkins sniffing around the streets of Pittsburgh where Marshall grew up asking questions of friends and relatives. He drew comparisons between Marshall and his father, who had well documented issues with violence against women with limitless potential on the football field.
Marshall caught wind of the nosy reporter and called his bluff; actually inviting him to stay with him in his home in Florida for a few days to see how he really lives. The interview lasts over a few days and seems to be as enigmatic as the wide receiver being profiled. He lets Hopkins in, but them recoils. He gives some line and then pulls it back. It’s an interesting read, so head over to read the whole piece. Here are a few snippets that caught my eye:
He says if I’m going to be thorough and write a fair story, I need to see how he interacts with his wife — whom he hasn’t told I’d be staying — his friends and his dogs.
“I want you to observe me for who I am,” he says in the car. “There is a perception out there that is unfair, and there really is another side that I think will help your story.”
Marshall put the reporter up in one of his guest rooms, where he also housed a pet tarantula in the closet. What, was the rattlesnake room taken or reserved for Joe Cowley???
I love that Marshall has a painting of him with his all-time favorite quarterback.
He owns a painting of himself with Jay Cutler, back when both were on the Broncos. It depicts a shouting Cutler grabbing Marshall’s face mask. Marshall says that before that game, they talked of breaking the record for tandem touchdowns, held by Peyton Manning and Marvin Harrison.
“This was our rookie year, and we were like, ‘Man we’re going to beat that record!’ So when we scored, he ran up to me and was like, ‘We got 140 more left to go!’ “
Marshall is learning how to deal with his anger, following the therapy he had last offseason:
“Today I get angry at the same things, but it’s how it affects me. It’s how I deal with it, how I cope with it,” he says one day while driving. “And it’s not just anger. It’s sadness. When I get sad, when I get lonely, when I get happy — it’s all emotions.”
All of this is interesting, but can we at least give Marshall a chance on the field and see what he’s all about between the white lines before we dissect every bad move his father made and what kind of car he drives? Is it possible to give Marshall a clean slate before trying to cast him as a volatile and fragile human being? Can’t we just let him play football??? Can we all just please leave Brandon Marshall alone???