Sunday, May 1, 2011

Crime of the Century: The Mark Herzlich Draft Day Story

One of the biggest stories of the 2nd and 3rd day of the draft was: Where is cancer defeating, offensive shredding, general badass Mark Herzlich going to end up? Herzlich hit up all the media, had his picture on the front page of their draft coverage, and all the mock drafts had him lined up to either go somewhere from the 3rd-7th round. I cleared my schedule and sat in front of the TV for hours just to find out where my favorite BC player, and inspiration, was going to play football next year. I nervously waited....2nd day ends, Herzlich's name is not called, Sunday starts, no call in the fourth round....fifth round....sixth round....What the hell, players are getting drafted from schools I've never heard of. Central Tennessee? Slippery Rock? Oh look the Patriots drafted Marcus Cannon, a player who actively has cancer. They shouldn't be that afraid to take Herzlich, a player cleared of cancer right? Seventh round starts, and whispers begin, Herzlich isn't going to be taken, and quickly the draft ended, and Mark Herzlich was left without a job.

How did this happen? Was it his bottom of the pack 40 time? Fear of injury to the leg that had the rod placed in it after the cancer? Could have been. What makes me sick is that NFL teams take chances all the time on character issues, Cam Newton went 1st in the draft! But not one team would take a player who just 3 years ago was pegged to be an early 1st round pick? Herzlich has all the intangibles to be a successful NFL player, he's smart, has great instincts, and is strong (HE BEAT FUCKING CANCER). All he needs back is his speed, and as Tedy Bruschi said on ESPN yesterday, it takes two seasons on the field after treatment has finished for a player to return to 100%. You'd think someone would have at least taken a flyer on him, see if his skill sets return. But the NFL decided yesterday to take an inspirational story, and flush it down the toilet. Great job turds.

Am I angry about this whole debacle? Absolutely, my love and hetero man crush has been documented at Mass Hysteria many times . It made me physically ill watching the draft, seeing his name not come up, and every non name OLB from Hillbilly U that got drafted felt like a kick to the groin. The anger then subsided to a dull depression, I felt bad for Herzy, here is a guy who had to battle back from a life threatening illness, and he is embarrassed in front of the entire world. He deserved better than this. But how would he react?

Mark Herzlich@markherzlich: Today sucked for me but everyone needs to pray for all the people in Alabama. They need us more than ever right now.

There it is, in the face of a moment where he could have felt bad for himself, Mark instead reaches out to his fans and asks them to instead think of the people who are suffering after the horrific tornadoes in Alabama. I cant even explain how this made me felt, I have never been more proud to be a BC Eagle. You are a thousand time the man than I am. Mark, if you ever read this you need to know that you are an inspiration to millions across the world who battle cancer daily, and to families who have sick family members. Someone in the NFL will be lucky to sign you, and the world awaits for your return to the gridiron. Well almost all of us anxiously await it, the quarterbacks you will be decimating won't.


Anonymous said...

I think you have summed up the way all of us felt watching the draft and after it was over..Mark will be beating an NFL Oline soon--just as he beat CANCER! I can't wait to see it!

Anonymous said...

Well said, I too was sick to see that a good player wasn't called during the draft, he is better player then most of the players that were called. But someone will get him, and he will be one of the best in the NFL..

Anonymous said...

What do you mean The NFl took an inspirational story and flushed it down the toilet...its not the NFL's responsability that every pretty boy coming out of B.C. gets drafted. Im not saying hes a bad football player but that this point in his career he looks better than he is capable of playing...give him a few years...If Herz wants it, he'll get there

Anonymous said...

Right on the money!!!' they'll regret it though.