Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson told a local sports radio talk show host about the suddenly controversial conversation with Cam Newton before this year’s draft.
He told Newton not to get any tattoos nor piercings during that conversation, with the point being that he wanted a clean-cut player as the face of his franchise.
This was not about Richardson being an overt, old-school racist. It’s about what he thinks is best for his team in the long run. Richardson knows that his team would not be as marketable – especially in this part of the country (the Carolinas) – with some brother who’s tatted up, blinged out of his mind, and with his pants hanging down below his ass.
Newton is a clean-cut young brother who says the right things, and appears to be a hard worker to boot. Given by his “no sirs” to Richardson while answering the questions “do you have tattoos?” and “do you have any piercings?”, Newton may well be on his way to being the franchise icon that Richardson desires.
The more clean-cut, the more endorsements $$$ a player – white or black – can make. Ask the Titans’ Chris Johnson and Allen Iverson if that is a big deal.
There are some people understand what Richardson was doing like this sista. Unfortunately, I know that there are the Jesse Jacksons of the world, the NAACP and other folks who may scream about how what a racist bastard Richardson is, like this guy. A lot more people think he was over the top, like this guy.
Richardson should tell those folks to kiss his ass. It’s his team, and if he wants his franchise QB to be a clean-cut, straight-laced brother (like we were raised to be, right?), then so be it.
It’s Richardson’s team – not mine, yours’ or anyone else’s.