If the media had, buried somewhere deep inside the earth, even a shred of the slightest hint of the smallest remnant of credibility left — they just lost it.
Both the news and sports media buzzed for weeks about this girl, Lauren Silberman. They called her a “pioneer” and said she was “breaking down barriers” all because she’d be the first woman to ever try out for the NFL. It would be “historic”, they said, when she went to the combine this weekend to audition to be the first female kicker in the league. This was a small regional combine, the type that usually doesn’t get any media attention — which is saying something considering the media generally covers anything related to the NFL. If a few NFL players have a barbecue and some of the guys go out back for a bean bag toss, ESPN will cover the event in primetime. So that shows you how irrelevant the regional tryouts normally are.
But at this one, because of this woman — the Amelia Earhart of place kickers — cameras were out in full force. The E! Channel followed Ms. Silberman around and chronicled the whole afternoon. And here’s how that afternoon went:
She took 20 minutes to place the ball on the tee correctly and then proceeded to boot it 19 yards on her first attempt and 13 on her second. Then she limped to the sideline, talked with trainers for 10 minutes and left the combine early. Amelia Earhart, it turns out, was more of an Amelia Bedelia. And I know Amelia Earhart’s expedition didn’t exactly turn out well, but this would be like if she got into the plane and yelled “how do you turn this thing on?” before finally driving down the runway and crashing into a tree.
The heroine in this case didn’t have any experience playing football at any level. Ever. She walked down the sideline before her kick and asked a bunch of male kickers how to lineup correctly. That’s like a surgeon walking into the room to perform a liver operation and asking the nurse “wait, which one’s the liver?” Look, I’m not trying to give the lady a hard time. The point is, she had no business being there. And the media should be absolutely embarrassed for giving her even a second of coverage. There was a time, many moons ago, when there was something called “journalistic integrity”. In those days I doubt they would have made headlines out of a delusional female, who’s never even watched the game of football, auditioning to become a pro at it. Honestly, this is worse than the time all the cable channels were scammed by the two dudes who claimed they had a carcass of Bigfoot in a storage locker. Yes, that was very stupid of them. But at least there’s a minuscule chance that Bigfoot is real. There’s zero chance of a woman becoming a professional football player. And, by the way, if you have any damn decency you wouldn’t WANT to watch a 115 pound woman out on the field with 7 foot defensive tackles. What happened to chivalry? We’ve turned it from “allow me to get the door for you ma’am” to “sure, go out there and get your skull crushed by a rampaging linebacker, I’ll sit here and watch. Girl power!”
Is this how we “respect women” now? By playing along with the insane charade that one of them could, hypothetically, at some point, compete on the same field as Patrick Willis or Terrell Suggs or Adrian Peterson? The NFL can’t exclude women from their tryouts because we live in a country full of ridiculous people who are offended by reality. Maybe, next, if a man shows up at a birthing center claiming he’s having contractions, we should force the staff to treat him. It’s only fair. After all, who are you to say that a man CAN’T have a baby? NEVER TELL ME WHAT I CAN’T DO. I can accomplish anything I set my mind to!
This story was tailor-made to irritate me. It has all of the necessary components: media sensationalism, feminism, and political correctness. The three things I hate the most in life. The only thing missing is a ventriloquist. If it turns out that this woman also wants to be the female Jeff Dunham, I swear I will spontaneously combust in a fit of rage.
All that said, she’s still a better kicker than Billy Cundiff. Sorry, Cundiff, Baltimore fans will never forget.