The comments from former Rams cornerback Cortland Finnegan about former Rams defensive coordinator Tim Walton struck a chord in St. Louis. An article on PFT containing an off-the-record response to the comments struck a chord with Finnegan.
I know that because he called me.
While watching the first half of the U.S. and Germany game/match/whatever, the phone rang. And it was Finnegan.
He took issue with my characterization of his attack on Walton as an attack on the Rams. Finnegan said that he wasn’t talking about the Rams, only about Walton. I told Finnegan that, because Walton was a member of the Rams coaching staff, Finnegan necessarily was talking about the Rams.
“Someone asked me about a particular individual,” Finnegan said, referring to Walton, whom Finnegan previously called atrocious in 2013. “Obviously they fired him for that reason.”
Finnegan also didn’t appreciate the reference to his 2010 in-game fight with Andre Johnson, and Finnegan particularly wasn’t pleased with the last paragraph of the article: “While Finnegan currently is saying all the right things in Miami, those who know him predict it’s simply a matter of time before he has issues with the coaching staff there — especially if he struggles and needs someone other than himself to blame for it.”
While “those” would have been more accurate if the word “some” had been used (and I regret not using “some” instead of “those”), Finnegan accused me of expressing an opinion that he can’t get along with coaches. I tried to explain to Finnegan that it’s not my opinion, and that the information came from a source in position to appropriately have that opinion.
Finnegan didn’t accept that explanation, questioning my “morals” and “backbone” before adding that if/when we meet, the conversation will be more interesting.
I asked how that conversation would be different from the current one, and I came away with the impression that he was suggesting I’d possibly be getting the Andre Johnson treatment. (Someone who knows Finnegan believes he was just “clowning,” but that’s easy to say when you’re not the one who would get punched once or more than once.)
While trying to understand Finnegan’s frustration, I asked him how someone suggesting he would have problems with the coaching staff in Miami is any different than Finnegan calling Walton atrocious.
“Was he not?” Finnegan shot back. “Call James Laurinaitis. Call Chris Long. Call Robert Quinn. Coach Fisher fired him.”
Finnegan closed by asking that the next time I plan to write something about him I get the whole story. I told him that, before writing anything about him in the future, I will call him.
“Don’t call me,” he said.
I’m not quite sure how that will allow me to get the whole story the next time I write about Finnegan.
And now you have the whole story. Which is probably a lot more of the whole story than you wanted to hear.