Dear Mr. Chad Ochocinco,
During your time with the New England Patriots, you grew on me. Putting aside the over-the-top touchdown celebrations (maybe because you only had one all season), the off-field antics varying from antagonistic comments to debatable decisions and most importantly: proving you can take a back-seat to someone else (or in the case of the Patriots, about 15 other players on offense), refraining from prematurely inserting yourself into the limelight.
The Patriots organization agrees: it’s not the physical aspect of the game that you lack, but rather the inability to pick up the complex playbook. Considering your high football-IQ is easily comparable to other wide receiver sensations like Terrell Owens and Randy Moss, it seems obvious that the kind of team you need is a simpler, non-Tom Brady shuffle dominated offensive strategy.
Maybe that’s why you chose to go to the Miami Dolphins. In between their appearance on this season’s HBO Series “Hard Knocks,” an offense led by a quarterback who most football watchers refer to as “What’s His Name?” and a team that was in desperate need of a significant wide receiver presence. It allows you to enter an immediate leadership role and mentor not only fellow receivers, but a quarterback in Matt Moore who is in desperate need of a significant offensive guidance (especially with the loss/firing of offensive guru Tony Sparano, and what do you know, he’s now the offensive coordinator for the New York Jets).
You should have followed Sparano.
Few other teams are in as dire need of a wide receiver as the Jets. Aside from end-zone toe-tapping, Super Bowl-saving leader Santonio Holmes, New York lacks a quality wide receiver core. Potentially with only two major targets (including you), it would seem obvious that an offensive coordinator as innovative as Tony Sparano would be able to find a way to return you, Mr. Ochocinco, to the 1,000 yard season form you had with the Cincinnati Bengals.
In between the continuously growing quarterback controversy of Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow, what better buffer could possibly be provided than Chad Ochocinco? I think it’s obvious that you have a tendency to “keep it real,” finding it unnecessary to sugar coat your advice and comments. Coming into an organization cold-turkey that is in dire need of black-and-white answers would not only have put you in a leadership role, but your opinion would immediately be worth as much as a team captain (although that might not mean much, considering Sanchez is a captain).
Speaking of limelight, is there a brighter one (excluding Los Angeles, because they’re football team-less for now) than in New York? Even with LeBron James taking his talents down to South Beach and now being fitted for his NBA Championship ring, Miami has nowhere near the outreach as New York. It would allow you to establish your credibility and personality quickly, primarily because New York would love you and your up-front approach.
The last time Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan saw an athletic talent available in the off-season, he pounced on newly released from prison wide receiver Plaxico Burress, infamously quoted saying: “Oh my goodness. Let’s go get this guy, are we crazy?” Obviously Burress is taller and a larger physical presence, but as far as talent goes, Mr. Ochocinco and I will agree that he belongs in the same category.
Everything points to the fact that with an Empire State of Mind, there is no doubt whatsoever: you are a star.
You could have returned to immortality. You would have thrived. You should have gone to the New York Jets.
Sincerely and respectfully,
Photo by Jeffery Beall
About the Author
Written by Aaron Scheinblum
Official Blogger Intern for the New York Jets. Broadcast Journalism major at Syracuse University, dreaming to be an NFL/NBA/MLB play-by-play commentator.