After conclusion of a disappointing 2011 season, Jets linebacker Bart Scott used one finger to bid farewell to the New York media, also telling a photographer to “[g]et that f–king thing out of my face.” The incident came in the wake of at least one report from the New York media that the team would be telling Bart to get out of their face, too.
Though flashing no fingers (or any other body parts), Scott was defiant on Saturday regarding the coming season. “You guys tried to throw dirt on me,” Scott told Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. “My prognosis: I’m going to ball out.”
The Jets were ready to throw dirt on Scott, exploring a possible trade but being unable to move a contract with plenty of guaranteed money. And Scott probably would have been happy to leave, given that he wasn’t happy with his lack of snaps.
Scott now wants to erase the image created by his hand-made exclamation point on the 2011 season. He says that he took a reduced salary last year and spearheaded an effort to persuade running back LaDainian Tomlinson and linebacker Calvin Pace to accept less money, too, as the team pursued cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha.
“Really? I’m the bad dude?” Scott said. “I’m the one that convinced LT to take a pay cut, so we could try to get Nnamdi. I’m the one who took the hit first. I told LT and Calvin . . . but I’m painted as an asshole. I ain’t never been an asshole. You can’t paint me as the bad guy.”
No one is painting Scott as a bad guy; he painted himself that way with a one-finger brush. But if blaming those who noticed and reacted to the gesture for noticing and reacting to it helps Scott find motivation for the coming season, so be it.