Upon hearing that Tank Johnson had been suspended for the first eight games of the NFL season, I began wondering what he and his fellow suspended NFL stars could do with their time. Then it dawned on me. They could field one kickass flag football team.
Now, there are a ton of leagues out there, each with numerous stories about how this one guy was going to go pro but he blew his knee out(damn you feeble ACL!). These guys, however are the real deal. Running around, pulling flags, and then drinking beer and eating wings afterwards is a great way to stay in playing shape. It's a lot better than sending Tank to prison, that's for sure. The only way to get them to play, though would be to offer an incentive. Since I'm unaware of any flag football league that awards lapdances and blunts as prizes, we'll have to go with cash.
In this case, we'll see what kind of team could be fielded for the 4-on-4 ZFootball Tournament, and it's $30,000 prize.
Pacman Jones: Currently serving a one year suspension from the NFL. Has the coverage skills to dominate at defensive back, and the speed to play wide receiver. Don't bring any cheerleaders, though unless you want him to show them his "bump 'n run" technique. In the absence of Michael Vick being suspended, Jones will play quarterback because of the arm strength he's shown while "makin' it rain".
Ricky Williams:Pending reinstatement decision to come in September. "Ricky Marley" appeared to be on track to get back into the NFL, but last month it was reported that he failed a drug test. It's also been reported that the physicians overseeing his rehabilitation program have recommended that he not be reinstated in September. That just means more time for flag football! Ricky has the talent to destroy opponents from the running back position. He also has some experience playing linebacker, and can use his coverage skills to lock-up whoever he's guarding. Just make sure that the officials realize who he is, or they might wonder why a homeless man has wandered onto the field.
Chris Henry: Suspended for the first eight games of the 2007 season. Henry's brushes with the law have been well publicized, and for that he's gotten himself an eight game suspension. His speed and size make him a threat downfield and in the red zone. He's the prime candidate to receive those jumpball passes for touchdowns because there's no rushing allowed within five yards of the endzone. He's also the most likely to celebrate every single f#@king point he scores, as he's been Chad Johnson's understudy for two years.
Tank Johnson: Recently suspended for the first eight games of the 2007 season. Tank will have a number of positions to play on his flag football team. He might not be the fastest, or most athletic, but he's very integral to the team's success. On offense he'll play center/TE, as his size will force opposing pass rushers to choose which side they want to rush from. He also has experience playing TE, and his wide frame is perfect for shielding the ball from defenders. On defense he will rush the passer. As nose tackle on a stellar NFL defense, Tank is familiar with angles and chasing down the QB. Combine that with his imposing size, and most quarterbacks will be too busy scrambling to even think of throwing the ball downfield. Unfortunately, he does have a weakness for beef jerky and honeybuns, so his teammates have to monitor his intake of those before games.
Michael Vick: Vick's involvement with dog-fighting could net him a multi-game suspension. If that's the case, there's always a spot for him on the flag team. He would instantly come in as the starting QB, and as long as he can keep his fingers to himself he should be able to torch opposing defenses every game.
Odell Thurman: Up for reinstatement into the NFL in July. However, recent alleged assault may keep him out indefinitely. Thurman has the talent to be used at multiple positions. Running back, defender, just about everything but designated driver. He can be a valuable asset off the bench, or perhaps "off the couch" which is what he practiced last season.
So there you go, not only do these NFL players get to practice something they enjoy, they also have a shot at winning $30,000. With the way some of them are going that would be a welcome addition to their legal defense fund.