One of the most interesting stories developing this offseason is the possible return of JaMarcus Russell to the NFL. The former first overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft has been out of the NFL for a few years now and is trying to make a comeback in order to salvage whatever career he maybe could have had with the Oakland Raiders.
Obviously, Russell isn’t going to be back with Oakland and despite rumors we still have little to no idea as to who would even be interested in signing the troubled quarterback. But while he’s got a not so pleasant past, it appears that Russell truly is giving this little comeback his all and is serious about restoring his reputation as an NFL quarterback.
“If he goes anywhere — the Jets, Miami, wherever — we’ll be with him,” Mobile, Alabama barber Reginald Payton said. “Just get on a team. We don’t care which team.”
Russell is currently enlisting the help of former pro quarterback Jeff Garcia, who is helping with honing Russell’s footwork, passing and conditioning.
Another local barber of Russell’s told Monte Poole of MercuryNews.com, that this return to the NFL isn’t about money. If Russell is broke or is in a financial rut, this comeback is about earning back his manhood more than it is about getting a paycheck — which the first time around seemed to be.
“He said they took his manhood,” Tre Hern explained. “It’s not about money. He’ll play for nothing.”
It’s really hard to argue that Russell’s manhood was taken by another other than Russell, given his lackadaisical play and low level of effort. But if what has been reported is true, and Russell truly is ready to do it right this time in the NFL, we might finally get to see what could have been all these years. Is he going to be successful — maybe not.
But to see Russell return to the NFL and conquer his demons would be a bigger victory than any of the ones he could have had on the field during the time he was often times off of it.