Rashard Mendenhall has Adrian Peterson’s back

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We thought the controversy surrounding Adrian Peterson’s slavery comment was over.   And then we saw Pittsburgh running back Rashard Mendenhall’s reaction to the remarks, albeit two days after the fact.

And, well, we don’t have a lot else to write about right now.

Mendenhall’s response to Peterson’s comments: “@AdrianPeterson is correct in his anology of this game. It is a lot deeper than most people understand.  Anyone with knowledge of the slave trade and the NFL could say that these two parallel eachother.”

We recommend checking out Mendenhall’s entire Twitter timeline on the subject because he has a lot of interesting things to say, including a link to this article from The Nation defending Peterson.

We don’t agree with Mendenhall’s take at all, but we respect the thought he put in behind it.  Even it lacks any reasonable perspective.

“Learn to LISTEN before you pass judgment. Because speaking without knowledge of subject is truly ignorant,” he wrote.

Now that we can agree with.

140 responses to “Rashard Mendenhall has Adrian Peterson’s back

  1. I cant wait now for the NFL to shut down and these MoFo’s have to go work for median incomes! Then they will find out that all the “knowledge” they neglected to digest while getting a free ride at their U would be a valuable thing to have!

    The players are OUT OF CONTROL! I applaud the Owners!

  2. What a horrible lack of perspective. Such irreverent statements about a horrible period of inhuman behavior.

    I wish someone would establish an underground railroad to help these knuckleheads escape from my realm of knowledge.

  3. Hmm…Well lets see…they stand you on a “stage” in your draws, shoeless, and shirtless. They look between your fingers, toes, nails, etc..etc..etc…

    they then put you up to the highest bidder ..(of course, the athlete is the one getting paid)…so I dont know about this analogy.

  4. The most patently rediculous statement I have heard in a long long time. If they appreciate their positions so little, I say can the whole damn bunch of them and start over. The game will still be the game. Get over your spoiled selves or just go away and let some folks play ball who want to play ball. Tired of you clowns anyway!

  5. He may or may not be a slave, but Clay Matthews sure made him his b!tch in the super bowl!

    Hit, pop!, fumble, game over.

  6. What’s really scary is how many of his “followers” agree with him. Eloquently typed garbage is still garbage.

  7. Fellas…CMON!

    Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property and are forced to work. FORCED to WORK….the NFL doesn’t FORCE any of these players to work…it is their CHOICE.

    Unfortunately, too many players feels as though they are ENTITLED to an athletics career.

    Wake up Fellas!

  8. Well dumbasses tend to be pack animals.
    The Nation article is bogus. Its whole point is “It’s slavery because they measure you and most of the owners are white”. Then goes on to make the ludicrous point that players must see team doctors only. Really? No player has ever gone for a second opinion? So all those players that saw specialists were cut? Oh wait, they weren’t.
    No one is forcing these players to play in the NFL. They can play in the UFL, CFL, Arena League or take their great (and free) college degrees and get a real job.

  9. I don’t care how much thought he put into it. Ignorant? Comparing slaves, who you know were bought and sold and paid nothing and killed if they didn’t perform, to NFL players who can choose whether they want to play or not and get paid MILLIONS of dollars to do so(you know voluntarily) is ignorant.

    From Wikipedia
    Slave:Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property and are forced to work.[1] Slaves can be held against their will from the time of their capture, purchase or birth, and deprived of the right to leave, to refuse to work, or to demand compensation. In some historical situations it has been legal for owners to kill slaves.[2]

    Yeh, sounds just like being a multi-million dollar NFL player doesn’t it. Rashard if you don’t like it quit(cause you aren’t a slave and you can quit) and go work at McDonalds. YOU have a choice. Slaves didn’t. Ignorant.

  10. I’ve read the article and am familiar with the books cited … the critical factor that all of them ignore is that NFL players CHOOSE that life…

    an Asian immigrant female who is shipped to another country in a 40 foot container then addicted to drugs, beaten and sexually enslaved is one of the scenarios that actual slavery entails…

    for NFL players to liken themselves to that is inexcusable.

  11. While I’m not sure I would go so far as to call the NFL a slavery-driven organization (I would liken it more to highly-paid prostitution, if anything), Mendenhall is a smart dude, and I’m glad to say he’s a Steeler. At least he doesn’t spout off at the mouth like a number of other players in the NFL, and actually puts legitimate thought and intelligence into what he says.

    We need more of that in the NFL. Guys like Rashard Mendenhall, Nnamdi Asomugha, etc. Football players shouldn’t really be role models for children, but if they are to be, these guys are the ones you tell your kids to watch.

  12. “Anyone with knowledge of the slave trade and the NFL could say that these two parallel eachother.”

    And you are one of these people?

    Please point out to me the parallel between the two – I’d love to see how the slaves are some of the richest peope in america.

    “Learn to LISTEN before you pass judgment. Because speaking without knowledge of subject is truly ignorant,” he wrote.

    someone should practice what they preach.

  13. “@AdrianPeterson is correct in his anology of this game. It is a lot deeper than most people understand. Anyone with knowledge of the slave trade and the NFL could say that these two parallel eachother.”

    Ok. I’m not that educated on the slave trade, but I am educated on the NFL. He is what happens in a players life in the NFL (this assumes the player is signed to the active roster and not a practice squad of a team)…

    1. Drafted or undrafted and signed by a team to the active roster for no less than $300k per year, higher draft picks we know make a lot more than that.

    2. Player works hard practicing and getting better (which they’ve been doing their entire lives).

    3. Player makes opening day roster and is guaranteed to make at least $300k for the next 6 month’s work.

    4. Player has a lot of free time and usually a nice car and place to live. Some players use this free time wisely and others get in trouble.

    5. Some players play well and make more money on the season, some don’t, but still do better than most ppl who don’t play professional sports.

    6. Players get Feb-April off for the most part…unless they make the super bowl. Light work at the most. May-June probably OTA’s where there is some hard work…July off until camp starts.

    7. Repeat the process.

    Like I said, I’m not up on the slave trade that much, but I can bet anyone who was ever a slave would trade places with Peterson and Mendenhall in a heart beat.

  14. If someone doesn’t like playing football in the National Football League, they are free to walk away at any point. I’m not sure that the slaves had the same option.

  15. Their ancestors who were forced into real slave labor for little to no pay are spinning in their graves right now. The article that he links to on his twitter page is more garbage. No man that makes that kind of money to play a GAME should ever be compared to being tortured as a slave. What a disgrace.

  16. Let me start off by saying this; Im not going to read these articles about the slave trade and what Mendenhall wrote about it. Just the fact that they are using the word slaves when these players “even the 3rd string Qb who makes league min. makes more money than 99% of us that posts on these boards” a slap in the face.

    Seriously, how do these players expect to try to get public opinion swade in their favor by trying to pretend they are slaves, or even mentioning the word slave.

  17. I read The Nation article and I believe it is the biggest load of crap I have ever read. Players have plenty of voice in the industry and they’re not treated as less than human. Citing a few examples of racism in football doesn’t mean that’s the culture of the whole NFL. Yeah, you’re bought and sold, but YOU get the money! If you don’t like being traded, you can quit. This whole conversation makes a mockery of what real slavery is.

  18. Ok, there is a very good point made here. On the other hand, slaves did not make millions of dollars. And players have a CHOICE, to not play the game, but instead capitalize on that 4 year education that most NFL players receive. If you do not want to be a “modern day slave” use your degree to make money. Get in to an industry, where you can choose who to work for, whenever you want. When you enter into the NFL, you are going to make more money thatn most of these players would ever make anywhere else. Slavery is not a fair analogy.

  19. I read Zirin’s column in The Nation. I listened before I passed judgement. And I couldn’t disagree more. What he fails to account for is that chattel slavery was a system in which people were kidnapped, held against their will, forced to work without any reward, and murdered with no consequences for their killers.

    No, Anthony Prior: that does NOT “sound an awful lot like the NFL to me.”

    Athletes of all races enter the NFL of their own volition, and they do so with great potential for fame, glory, and astronomical financial rewards. They put up with all of the garbage that Zirin writes about voluntarily. This is the life they have chosen for themselves and while nobody should have to deal with the things Prior and Zirin are writing about, that doesn’t make it comparable to slavery.

    People aren’t stupid. You’re using a buzz word that inspires an immediate emotional reaction for anybody with a pulse. We can respect the challenges faced by NFL players without making absurd comparisons that ultimately cheapen the arguments they’re making, blinding people to the fact that there may actually be issues worth looking more closely at.

  20. I posted this in the AP thread and I’ll pose the question again for those of you less than intelligent posters who agree with Rashard and AP:

    You come to this site and since you do I’m assuming most of you no doubt spend hundreds (maybe even thousands) on NFL merchandise, tickets, etc.

    Wouldn’t that make you complicit in this modern day “slavery?” After all, aren’t you lining the pockets of the “evil” owners making money off the backs of all these modern day “slaves” for your entertainment?

  21. “Learn to LISTEN before you pass judgment. Because speaking without knowledge of subject is truly ignorant.”

    This is coming from someone who humped big ben on national television?

  22. Right, because slaves had 6-7 figure salaries, they had a choice in the type of work they did, and the worst thing to happen to a slave was being cut from one plantation and having to find work at another.

    Oh the parallels.

  23. What’s so funny about all of this back and forth is that both sides actually think that the majority of the public is going to be sympathetic to their plight. But in reality us fans are just bearing witness to the rich fighting the richer.

    As far as these players comparing their situation to slavery, they’re just mocking their ancestors true battle. It’s pathetic.

  24. Rosnethall says: “We don’t agree with Mendenhall’s take at all.”

    Who is “we”? Did you and the guy who sweeps the parking lot take a vote and decide you would universally do the thinking for a body of people somewhere?

    Get a grip on yourself, homey.

  25. But seriously, he has to realize something – he is WILLING PARTICIPANT in the whole NFL scene. He is extremely well compensated for these “indignities”, whether real or perceived.

    He seems a smart enough guy. He could have used his brain to become a teacher and help make a difference in the lives of kids. He could have gone to law school. He could have continued to study in graduate school to pursue his intellectual passions. Instead he chose to drop out of school early and chase the dollar signs in the NFL. I’m sorry, but you get no sympathy from me. You get to play a game for a living. You get paid a boat load of money to play that game. The physical risks of playing that game are well known to you and you’re free to make your own choice as to whether or not it’s worth it to move forward. But you DON’T get to compare yourself to a real slave because your bosses want you and other players to take 57% of revenues instead of 60%.

    And furthermore, just think about this for a second. Look at the hate and vitriol out there from players towards owners. What hope is there for a deal? Really, what hope is there for the sport when the players think owners and coaches are like slave traders? No matter how you look at the relationship – employee/ employer or partners – isn’t that relationship poisoned?

  26. While his tweets are well thought out and the blog he referenced well researched, these comments are still ignorant. Comparing playing football for between $400,000 and $20,000,000 to slavery is just foolish. If a player doesn’t like how a coach or owner is treating him, he can quit and go get a real job, I don’t think slaves were given that option.

    Playing in the NFL is nothing like slavery, it doesn’t parralel slavery or have anything in common with slavery. It is really sad that 2 guys making millions to play a game would compare their situation to people who were paid nothing and litterally owned.

  27. And they are not drafted to be whipped and beaten, and fed to keep them working, but to make a minimum dollar amount that their white predecesors could only dream of. And the players of today get upset about being asked for money to help old white guys that can’t walk, Are broke, and in homes, and never made a $100,000 in their career.

  28. If Rashard Fumblehall thinks that men making millions of dollars on a yearly basis with the right to collectively bargain bears any resemblence to men, women and children who were divided from their families, kept locked in chains, beaten, raped and treated like property then he is even more stupid than I took him to be.

    If this were a white guy saying this crap he would be hammered unmercifully but because Fumblehall is black, he and AP get a pass. Got to love this PC country.

  29. And Mendenhall is truly ignorant if he really believes that what he CHOOSES to do for a living and slavery remotely parrallel eachother.

  30. Rashard, who is forcing you to play in the NFL? Go play in the UFL or CFL if you don’t like the NFL. Better yet, go dig ditches or work in a coal mine if you don’t like the way you are treated as a Pro Football player.

  31. Anyone that compares the NFL to Slavery is an idiot … Plain and simple.

    NFL players are paid a TON of money to play a game and can walk away whenever they want.

    How in the hell is there any similarity to slavery in that???

  32. no matter how much we listen the truth is this.

    Peterson, mendenhall, every single NFL player CHOSE to be in the NFL, they choose to be in this profession. They are paid very very generously to do so (even the league minimum is pretty dam generous). Slaves did NOT chose to come to America to be owned by other human beings, they were captured and sold by their own people and then brought here to be abused and tortured if they refused to work. They werent given a very wealthy salary to do so, all they were given were their lives… lives of servitude! Not only is that a bad analogy, its a very irresponsible one at that. The way these athletes speak through their social networking sites shows that bc they are athletes they didnt have to pay much attention in school and were given free rides bc of their athletic ability…. otherwise they wouldnt make such stupid uneducated remarks as they so often do.

  33. here’s the truth: Regardless of color, a large majority football players aren’t incredibly intelligent individuals. This makes it difficult for many of them to articulate coherent thoughts when they have strong opinions.

    what these guys are trying to say is this:

    Today there is a disproportionate number of black people in the NFL, many of whom come from low income families.

    This trend is representative of broader disparities in American society. Despite overall progress in racial/cultural cohesion between different groups in popular culture, disparities still exist and sports are where many of the financial destitute resort.

  34. What? No one is forcing you against your will to play professional football. In fact, it’s quite the opposite: you are being paid millions of dollars by NFL teams and, in the case of stars, hundreds of millions in endorsement deals directly resulting from your professional football career.

    A lot of people would kill to be in your shoes. You aren’t forced to do anything; you chose football as your career. Instead of studying textbooks in college, you studied playbooks. Now, you’re experiencing joblessness like the rest of the economy.

    I’m not on either side of the labor disagreement, but it’s obviously ridiculous that such a profitable industry can’t come to agreement and that both owners and players are shortsighted enough to let the golden goose get away.

    And by the way, I read that article that Mendenhall linked. If you feel you don’t have a voice in your industry, get an education and stand up for yourself in a way that the system allows instead of crying over twitter. Was Mendenhall’s name on the lawsuit that Manning, Brady, and Brees filed?

    Just saying.

  35. No, it isn’t a lot deeper than people understand. The only parallel to slavery is the fact players don’t always get to decide where they get to play until they become free agents. It still doesn’t change the fact that no one is forcing them to play, much less for free.

    Plus, players who really had a problem with who their team was going to be found ways to get out of it. Eli Manning, John Elway, Bo Jackson….Carson Palmer. If you don’t want teams trading your services, then you concede some money in your deal for a clause that gives you the power to veto any trade. Players get these kind of deals all the time. I guess we’ve never seen players holdout before ever either.

  36. I’m not a history major, but I don’t think those forced into slavery and brought to this country signed contracts to 6/7/8 figure salaries.

  37. Here is a guy…..Who plays for probably the most owner friendly team in the NFL..(and i am no Steelers fan).Rarely do Steelers, past or present say one bad thing about the Rooney’s..and is talking about slave trade? Christ, i simply don’t want to listen to any more of this…….it’s ridiculous

  38. These comments point out why the NFL and it’s players are overdue for a fall.

    Pride comes before the fall.

  39. Having read the article in full, let me say this:
    Football players, if you really truly feel like your life as a football player is analogous to being a slave, I suggest you join the “normal” work force like the rest of the US Population so that you can experience things like:

    -NO contract whatsoever. Yours might not be guaranteed against injury, but ours aren’t guaranteed at all! In VA at least, this is a right to work state. As such, we can be terminated at any time, for any reason. PERIOD.

    -No signing bonus. Wow, I wish I could complain that I get a huge cash bonus upfront. I do IT work, and I’m quite good at it, but guess what. We RARELY get signing bonuses, and in this current economy, that rarity has become even more scarce.

    -No fame and glory. Oh gee, you take of the uniform and you don’t get any respect?? A lot REAL working class people (Janitors, maids, garbage men, REAL manual labor type people) don’t get any respect WITH the uniform. When’s the last time you ever heard of anyone asking a construction worker asked for his autograph?

    -No financial freedom. Go ask a teacher, a police man, or a firefighter when they plan to buy their next Ferrari. Actually, lets make it even easier, ask them when they plan to buy their next Benz. You complain about average careers of 3.5 years, but guess what: EVERY SINGLE NFL player makes more over the course of that 3.5 year career, even at the league minimum, than most high school teachers, police officers, and firefighters do over 10 years. Probably even over 15. And most of them don’t have 4 months off (more if you are a player who doesnt show up til training camp in July). Players might only average 3.5 years, but even at the league minimum of $340K for 2011, there are very few fans who would turn down that type of salary. People in the top 3% of my profession don’t even make half that. And that’s one of the more well paying professions in the NORMAL work force.

    Bottom line, yes you players have some conditions you don’t like about your jobs. We all do. But NOTHING about your work environment is anything close to slavery. I challenge you to come see what its like to work for a real living, to see how the majority of your fan base is trying to cope with these tough economic times, and then with a straight face, come back and complain all about how hard it is to be so privileged to play in the NFL.

  40. Obviously the head collisions are impacting more brain functions that one thought…..now players are losing intelligence too.

  41. Peterson and Mendenhall are exactly the kind of scummy, greedy players that brought me to the decision to no longer follow the NFL and never ever again spend a dime on the sport or support the NFL in any way.

    What a pair of walking bags of used douche juice.

  42. Once again.

    All races, all civilizations have a history of enslaving their own. Without exception.

    Mr. Mendenhall, since you are so well versed on the subject, then tell us why it seems that you only really acknowledge the inner city american african (or whatever) point of view on the subject.

    Now, that is ignorant!

    Trying to argue this point or show any correlation between the two whatsover is really unhealthy, really bad thinking.

    Two and a half years ago the American people were dished propaganda on such a large scale it was frightening. Then, we blindly followed our disinformation specialists and sold ourselves down the river. Now, after living through the realization that we have been lied to in such a manner, to such a degree, that we can’t even measure or estimate it, we have grown to not accept something just because its in print, on the web, on the radio, or on the tube.

    “Playing in the NFL correlates with slavery.” Yea, alright. Entitlement programs create equality. Yea, alright. Socialism is good, in spite of what the reality of living in europe, russia, and china really is. Yea alright. Teachers make too much money. Yea alright. College football is a fair competition. Yea alright.

    Sometimes, I wish we could just respond to the current madness by saying…

    Your a nutbar.

  43. Don’t you remember those grand slave drafts that they used to hold in the old South? …The plantation owners would choose the most talented slaves and pay them huge signing bonuses …just like the NFL.

    Sooner or later these imbeciles will have the public 99% behind the owners

  44. Here is a guy…..Who plays for probably the most owner friendly team in the NFL..(and i am no Steelers fan).Rarely do Steelers, past or present say one bad thing about the Rooney’s..and is talking about slave trade? Christ, i simply don’t want to listen to any more of this…….it’s ridiculous

    You are exactly on point.

  45. Correct me if I’m wrong, but these players have the option and free will to walk away from the game whenever they choose. I don’t think slaves had that option.

  46. Using drafting/trading as support to why its the same thing as slavery is stupid. How about the fact that it’s your choice to be drafted and traded? You don’t want to be drafted, or traded, then you have the freedom to go work where ever else you want. A real slave didn’t have a choice.

    If a player is drafted, the team who drafted them doesn’t own them personally. They don’t have to sign the contract and join that team. The team might own their NFL career for the next year, but there is more in this world than just the NFL. They can go work somewhere outside the NFL. Or they can just sit out the year and reenter the draft the following year and hope to be drafted by a team they like. When a slave was drafted, he was owned. The slave didn’t have a choice to go do another profession. He didn’t have the choice to be drafted by someone else.

    If a player is traded to a team he doesn’t like, then don’t play! Retire and go work somewhere else. Your “owner” can’t do anything about it (atleast not physically). When a slave is traded, he doesn’t get the choice of not working for his new owner. If he didn’t work, he was beaten and/or killed.

    The only way drafting/trading in the NFL is similar to slavery is by completely ignoring the context, and thinking the players have no choice in the matter.

  47. I think its funny these players refer to themselves as “people with experience with slavery”. Are you kidding me? They are both in their early to mid 20’s. Hell chances are their parents have no experience with slavery. Just because you read about it doesn’t mean it affected you.

    But they’re 100% right. Having the option of making millions of dollars a year(or a few hundred thousand, I don’t know how I could live on that much money)…..is the same thing as slavery

  48. last I checked these players can change professions, play for the AFL or take their money and relax for the rest of their lives.
    They can go to any restaurant they want, live where they want and come and go as they please.

    These fools insult those that were enslaved.

    The slaves worked their hands to the bone morning to night- little food, couldn’t leave, slept on the ground and HAD to answer to their masters or be beat till submission.

    These things have NOTHING in common

  49. Just when I thought the hole couldn’t get any deeper. What’s next….war comparisons again?

  50. And I support the players in this argument(lockout). But players say dumb things. And I still support the players. Go figure. Your welcome Adrian. By the way, my favorite player, on my favorite team.

  51. ppdoc13 says:
    Mar 17, 2011 1:35 PM
    If Rashard Fumblehall thinks that men making millions of dollars on a yearly basis with the right to collectively bargain bears any resemblence to men, women and children who were divided from their families, kept locked in chains, beaten, raped and treated like property then he is even more stupid than I took him to be.

    If this were a white guy saying this crap he would be hammered unmercifully but because Fumblehall is black, he and AP get a pass. Got to love this PC country.

    TRUE, where the hell is the outrage from Rev. J or the race guadian AL in all this with these completely BS comments.

  52. so, to recap… the Players are:

    – Making 1.3M a year average

    – think that they should be able to take over 50% of gross revenue without investing in a business

    – circumvented labor law by decertifying in the midst of a negotiation

    – turned down audited financial statements and first refusal of an 18 game season 2 years from now

    – think they are ‘slaves’

    I’m OK with firing them all and recruiting new guys who actually appreciate the incredible opportunity that the NFL offers.

  53. Are YOU kidding me?! Hey, Rashard, look at the number of comments on this single headline. You AND Mr. Peterson are prime examples of what is ALL WRONG with this country. So many of us are getting by on what we can get and you are claiming YOUR situation is no better than being a slave. Do us all a favor and RETIRE! After all, that’s one of many CHOICES you still have in this FREE country!

  54. Rashard……come close…listen carefully: You are a grown man who plays a GAME for a living….you are an entertainer…you are an OVERPRIVILEGED and OVERPAID entertainer…..you are an INGRATE who is oblivious to the plight of the many who would trade places with you…..

    You are not ENTITLED to anything…..no one OWES you anything…..

    You owe the Rooney family an APOLOGY!

  55. I will add that it’s refreshing to see someone injecting critical theory into these topics. AP wasn’t smart enough to be looking for allegory, but Mendy articulated it well.

    I have no problem with what Mendenhall has said, but most people just see “agrees with AP” and think the worst.

    Having actually read a bit more, I can say I agree with the guy. He was honest (albeit a bit condescending) and wasn’t afraid to show his intelligence in an arena that is extremely anti-intellectual and very emotional.

    What AP said was colossally dumb, but Mendenhall is coming at this from a scholarly angle, which is absolutely fine.

  56. This is embarassing to all people and a insult to those who are slaves currently around the world. It also is an insult to the memory of those who were actual slaves in this county.

    None of these guys have held real jobs, or they would realize, most of us work for the man, and feel we are underpaid. This is not slavery, it is the real world.

  57. “Mendenhall is a smart guy relative to his fellow players, but he’s dead wrong on this one.”

    Uh, oh. Houston, we have a problem.

    Any wonder De “Dig It” Smith was elected to lead this group of reprobates and miscreants?

  58. Some of these players are really getting on my nerves. You know what? I am going to watch football whether or not the multi-millionares are playing. If they bring scabs, I’m going to watch. This isn’t the 80’s anymore. The talent is better and there are more options for players to keep their skills up. Certainly would make fantasy football interesting.

  59. As an black man in this country, who is fortunate enough to have attended and played at an Ivy League school and to have owned my own business for the past nine years, I would sign up for Adrian and Rashard’s brand of “slavery” in a heartbeat… just like THEY did!

    I was not around when they slaves were brought here, but I don’t think they had the opportunity to attend Universities and I don’t think they had the opportunity to choose to make 7 figure salaries. But, I was an engineer, not a history major.

  60. Rashard, I am as big of a Steeler fan as you can get. I have supported your play on the field. But, I will tell that you that if you have ever said anything dumber in your life, especially at your age, I would have a very hard time believing it. No way there is any type of reasonable comparison between NFL players and slaves. Go read the reasons why above which I will not restate.

    If you don’t like the NFL, please go do something else for a living. If you and the rest of the players think you can do a better job managing things than the current owners, then go start your own league. Many of us are really getting tired of hearing such stupid crap from the players.

    Everyone is entitled to make a mistake, and you just did. Otherwise, I really hope you don’t open your mouth and say the same type of dumb thing again, ever ever again. It will significantly reduce my opinion of you as someone I believe in.


  61. Sorry, but anybody who tries to dry hump his QB while he’s on the ground in the middle of a game has no credibility anyway.

  62. Folks,

    We’re dealing with two guys here who have probably been playing football ALL their lives and have only focused on that. Spending time with academia was probably not the priority through Junior High, High School, and DEFINITELY not college, since both these dopes left as Juniors. To expect any kind of intelligent thought from these dummies is probably a bit of a stretch. It has nothing to do with color either and everything to do with intellect, and these guys don’t have it.

    To compare the coddling life, separated from true reality, that these idiots live to slavery is asinine to the 10th degree. Is the NFL really like the rickety slave ship that locked them to chains so they could barely move? Is the NFL like the slave traders who would throw sick slaves overboard with heavy chains? Adrian & Rashard…there is NO comparison. Get your heads out of your asses already.

    Folks..mark my words..this lockout will get ugly. DeMaurice Smith is just a few days from playing the race card himself….believe me.

  63. Wow…he is actually more right than I thought.

    Is anyone who follows the NFL not a blithering redneck?

    What he’s saying has gone over everyone’s head; they’re just too enraged by seeing the words NFL and Slavery in the same sentence that they can’t take a deep breath and realize he’s not directly comparing them at all.

    It’s very possible to look at something severe and find parallels to something not severe.

    Every day my faith in the NFL wanes…so much closed-mindedness it’s unbelievable. I’m ashamed to be a Steelers fan.

  64. Well Mendenhall and Peterson both make millions of dollars. An added bonus of being black they are able to use their Freedom of Speech however they like. If they were white and made comments like this they would be fired, boycotted, smeared. Idiots.

  65. dear Mr. Peterson and Mr. Mendenhal,
    The average median income in the United States is $44,000.00 per year. The average salary in the NFL is 1.8 Million…the minimum is $295,000.00.

  66. Where did Mendenhall grow up? He must have been treated very unfairly to form his ridiculous opinion.

  67. Take a running back or two and what are they going to do? Look for a hole and run with it. Too bad that hole was in their education.

  68. If a slave holds out of work, odds are he/she will suffer some type of physical harm.

    If an NFL player holds out of work, he is rewarded with more money.

    hmmm…..something doesn’t add up there.

  69. Seriously, if it is like slavery quit. There is someone else behind you that would love to play. I can’t walk into my job and demand changes. I knew what the deal was before I started.

  70. Hey, Mendenhall and AP Slavery is a system under which people are treated as property and are forced to work.[1] Slaves can be held against their will from the time of their capture, purchase or birth, and deprived of the right to leave. Is this the way the NFL is? I don’t think so!

  71. it may not be a direct comparison to slavery, but to dismiss these notions on the basis of his income and how it compares to every other american is baseless. there’s a reason why i and many others don’t make what he and AD makes, we don’t have their talents!! and we don’t know the situations they as players deal with, so get out your emotions and stop dismissing things just because u don’t experience it. let some of us tell it racism doesnt even exist…. go figure

  72. I don’t remember ever hearing about a slave being pad a minimum $325,000 US!! Pro athletes are spoilt greedy humans however so are the owners. Rookie wage scale YES
    18 game season NO

  73. xsoulcrusherx says:
    Mar 17, 2011 3:30 PM
    If a slave holds out of work, odds are he/she will suffer some type of physical harm.

    If an NFL player holds out of work, he is rewarded with more money.

    hmmm…..something doesn’t add up there.

    Yes, the players are locked out. That’s what doesn’t add up. This is not a strike.

  74. Slavery ha ha ha are these idiots serious? I’m sure if anyone of their ancestors who lived through those times would quickly point out there were no millionaire slaves they weren’t picking cotton on national TV in front of millions of people cheering for them in there custom made kunta kinte jerseys what an ignorant ass to even compare the two slaves couldn’t go from plantation to plantation for more money or playing time or retire with maybe not ideal benefits but with better benefits than I will retire with maybe one thing we should do is crack the whips on ignorant NFL stars who dog fight or rape women at bars or shoot up strip clubs this guy and all these ignorant players are all the same if you don’t like it mr Peterson why not retire instead of being an uncle Tom and making the money you make bitch

  75. People started slamming Mendenhall as soon as this article was posted. I wonder how many took time to read the commentary in The Nation, which at least puts Peterson’s comment–and Mendenhall’s support of it–in perspective. You don’t have to agree with them, and I’m wary of using terms like slavery and holocaust to describe lesser historic experiences. But you should at least be willing to discover why they applied the analogy before vomiting your typical uninformed diatribes all over the page.

    It’s interesting how so many people can love a game while envying, despising, and constantly ridiculing the men who play it.

  76. What? I cant hear him. All I hear is Coughing. Him coughing up the ball in the biggest game of his life and looking like a bug eyed freak trying to get it back. This guy needs to shut the hell up. His great great great grandparents who had to live in shacks and get whipped would be rolling in their graves if they heard this dude say him getting paid millions instead of more millions is slavery. What an idiot.

  77. That two black men are making this analogy is, to me, an insult to their very race.

    You can compare the freedom of movement that NFL players have to that lack of freedom that slaves had, but – income and living conditions aside – the argument is specious at best.

    If an NFL player doesn’t like that Team A dictates where he must play after he is drafted – and both John Elway and Eli Maning proved that is a farce itself – then all he has to do is refuse to sign a new contract with Team A once the exisitng one runs out, and *POOF* he becomes a “free” man.

    Did slaves have that luxury?

    The NAACP and every black player in the NFL needs to sit these two morons down and explain to them how ridiculous they both sound.

    By using their own analogies on both of them, I would be justified in saying that black running backs in the NFL are total idiots. That would be an incorrect statement, of course; it’s just THESE two that are idiots. But their logic would be just as skewed as mine would be.

  78. I wonder if the owners were to fire each one of these clowns and did away with the players union, how long it would take for them to be begging for their jobs back. The more I read the less im willing to support this non sense. I love the game of football, but after hearing some of this insanity I am fine without these guys. At this point I would much rather see scrubs out there and have a complete league rebuild.

  79. “But you should at least be willing to discover why they applied the analogy”

    You don’t seem to get it. I suspect you never will.

  80. the hatred for them is unreal! Why not despise the top paod musicians & actors w/ 20 million a film demands? For all the revenue the nfl produces a person is damned for wanting to get a bigger piece of that pie???

  81. deb: Why do you just blindly defend Steeler’s players? And as an internet writer/researcher, shouldn’t you see the errors in statements of guy’s who make make as much money as they do? It would be the objective thing to do. If you were truly a writer/reseacher. Instead of just blindly defending Steeler’s player’s.

  82. @richm2256 …

    I disagree with you on almost everything–but unlike most of these other numbnuts, you’re smart enough to read the editorial in The Nation to get the point they were trying to make (link in Gregg’s article). Doesn’t mean you have to agree with them (I don’t agree with using such an incendiary comparison), but the commentary at least puts things in context.

  83. and you morons that blindly support the owners and their coordinated propaganda campaign are any smarter. I would rather the players have my hard earned money with the likelihood that a Warrick Dunn will do some good with it than put it in the hands of a Jerry Jones and never see it again.

    These 32 owners have the public so brain washed it is baffling. These thieves took a billion dollars off the top and want to take another billion……no questions asked. The players can’t steal money unless the owners agree to it. I guess we should blame Rashard, AP and DeMaurice because Al Davis gave Stanford Routt $20 million in guaranteed money.

    Wake up…. the owners have bent the public over the trough for such a long time we have become accustomed to the treatment. The players are leaning over willingly. Although well compensated the NFLPA will not agree to any cuts without viewing the books.

    I pay to see Rashard and AP not Jerry Jones

  84. I think this indicates the fall of civilization as we know it (the fall of education at any rate).

  85. Read the article, because if i’m going to call a person who isn’t a PFT poster an idiot, I want to be sure.
    I was pretty stunned by the language. Modern Day Slavery. All owners are white, and 70% of the players are black.
    And 100% of the NFL players have the capacity to be rich if they aren’t stupid with their money.

    Having read what passed asn an excuse for justification in this article makes me even more sick with this statement.

    Owners get most of the cash? No kidding. They own the team. Owners share their profit with the players, it’s called a game check. If it’s supposed to be a real cash sharing situation, are the players going to cough up some cash to the owners for the endorsements? You know, the endorsements they got for playing the game?

    Oh, suddenly silent on that.

    This is a crock. It was a stupid statement, period, and it’s more proof that loud obnoxious statements are becoming the primary language of this country.

    Adrian Peterson and Rashard Mendenhall are pathetic. Adrian Peterson is from Palestine, TX, and I always wanted to support a local athlete. Now I can’t. No matter who comes to justify this ignoramus, I just can’t abide by it. Let’s all cry for the players, because they have no power in the NFL and don’t make as much money as the people who take the bigger risk. Boo effing hoo.

    Go get a job. A real job. Then see how much input you have. Even less than you have in the NBA.

    The only thing they are a slave to are greed, and the inability to shut their mouth before they say something idiotic. At this point, I’m surprised that Adrian Peterson didn’t equate his speeding ticket to a lashing.

  86. Deb, I did take the time to read The Nation. I personally thought the analogies made were a big stretch and generally didn’t agree with them in support of the contention that this is modern day slavery. Yes, many of “stats” were technically correct such as the owners being white, while most of the players are not, etc. But I personally didn’t think that made a reasonable analogy to slavery. At all. I think 2 things are much more important here. First, the fact that the NFL players are not forced to play football, while slaves were forced to be slaves. Second, players are generally making more money than the average Joe, while slaves make nothing. Aren’t those much more important facts than the race of the owners and players? More can be said to differentiate, but I think those 2 are enough.

    I personally think that both AP and Rashard made comments that were off base with that analogy.

    Just my honest opinion.

  87. So in reality AP and Retard Mendenhall are saying that their whole lives they dreamed of being slaves…..Hmmmmm, sounds just about as dumb as this claim.

  88. and thanks for fumbling that ball in the superbowl. it’s only the biggest game of your life. sure, fumble the ball when you’re poised to take the lead and pull off a comeback for the ages.

  89. Guess the old adage was incorrect: it’s not children who should be seen and not heard — it’s football players.

  90. @holeinone09 …

    People keep misunderstanding me. I don’t agree with the analogy. My point is that these guys aren’t idiots letting their tongues wag around without purpose. When I heard Peterson’s comment, I thought it was an unfortunate analogy. But Mendenhall put it into context by referencing The Nation piece. And that article references a book on the subject by NYT columnist William Rhoden, a man I think is extremely intelligent.

    I don’t have to agree, but The Nation made some interesting points–especially about the Combine. The first time I caught the underwear show, I was horrified. I enjoy watching the drills at the Combine. But having each young player strip to his underwear and stand in front of a roomful of men? 😯 That’s just freaky weird and honestly made me feel like I was watching something akin to a slave auction. Logically, I knew I wasn’t–but it made me extremely uncomfortable.

  91. I can’t speak for or against what Rashard Mendenhall said since I’m not involved in the game. I also haven’t lived Rashard’s life and therefore don’t have his perspective about the NFL/NFLPA contract issues. And frankly, neither has anyone else on the message board.

  92. I went to the Nation article cited and found it interesting, but it really doesn’t change my opinion.

    It’s like throwing out the word Nazi. Sure, one can show similarities to the Nazis and just about any politician. But the Nazis were cruel and inhumane. Their ilk were mass murders.

    Slavery, at it’s heart, is about control and domination. The article notes that there are racists. There are racists every where. Because sports are physical they of course are going to look at the health of players, but they also do IQ testing. Back in the days of slavery, you weren’t allowed to teach a slave to read. As offenses have gotten more complex, so too has the need for overall players with smarts.

    And yeah, it’s painful that there’s no black owners. But blacks have made great strides. Some of the best coaches are black and one of the best GMs is (Ozzie Newsome) is black.

    I know it’s tough to say, but change takes time but I have no doubt in my life time I will see a black owner and many more black GMs.

    But this talk by AP seems more destructive, than helpful. With subjects like this you need to talk in length rather than in bumper sticker slogans.

  93. Well, there’s a big difference between being stolen from your homeland, tied and chained in a ship, and made to be alone and FORCED to work menial jobs for nothing under the threat of lynching, to crying about not making enough millions on a contract you can take or leave. I am actually siding with the union on this, but idiotic statements by athletes with a sense of entitlement can change public opinion rather quickly.

  94. Censors … must you be sooo predictable? It’s okay for luckywi to slam me professionally but not okay for me to ask if he can read … because if he could, his question has already been answered. I’m trying to be respectful of you guys but that’s a two-way street. Disrupting the normal flow of conversation just because you can is not respectful. Letting the guys slam me and not letting me respond is not respectful.

  95. @luckywi …

    Since I’ve asked other commenters why they didn’t click on the links in Gregg’s article and read the background material, it should be obvious even to the slow-witted that I didn’t blindly defend anyone but took the time to find out why Rashard Mendenhall was supporting Adrian Peterson.

    As I’ve said in several posts now, I don’t agree with using terms such as slavery and holocaust to describe modern-day events that pale by comparison. However, Mendenhall referred to the commentary in The Nation, which I found intriguing. It provided a rationale for Peterson’s slavery analogy. I still do not agree with Peterson and Mendenhall on the issue, but now at least I can see how they arrived at their conclusion. This is what thinking people do 🙄

    No, I’m not tdotsteel, but was thrilled to give him a thumbs up.

  96. I did read The Nation link. It’s still an ill-advised argument. You didn’t bother speaking up until a Steeler was involved. And you defend a guy, yet back off of what he says? Agree, or not? Hard to tell. They are not slaves. They choose to do what they do. Don’t want to strip? Don’t. Don’t want to play by your employers rules? Don’t. And as I stated, Adrian Peterson is my favorite player on my favorite team. But I can’t defend that kind of ignorance. You shouldn’t either.

  97. I know that certain words get us all going back and forth and emotions get in the way but when I read the original post from AP, I thought he compared it to ‘MODERN DAY’ slavery.

    Maybe “modern day” slaves would be compensated to do what the original slaves did for free. Maybe “modern day” slaves would risk there well being for an owner who would give them pennies in comparison to what they make on his talents. There is a reason why there are guaranteed minimums. Maybe if there were no minimums, the owners would pay the players $7.25/hour.

    I remember a few years ago when Prince (singer) had the word “slave’ painted on his face because of how his record label treated him. Some may have felt that he went to far but none of us were in his shoes. from the outside, it is so easy to say that AP makes a lot of money so he should just shut up and play ball. Maybe we should listen closer and realize that he said MODERN DAY!!!!

    Don’t ever think that “WE” are really a part of “them”…..MODERN DAY slavery exists but the only problem is that the new slaves arent just african americans…..unfortunately, the rest of the slaves think they are free.

  98. @Deb
    Perhaps the censors take exception to your pious attitude. In your opinion, we’re all a bunch of numbnuts and we “don’t understand football as well as you do”. For the life of me I don’t understand why you aren’t walking the sideline with all of that self proclaimed knowledge. I would think that Tomlin would be calling you, asking for your advice before the draft.

    Luckywi is right…..it is sometimes hard to tell if you agree or not, once somebody calls you on it.

    William C. Rhoden may in fact be very intelligent, but he is also highly racist. I watch the Sports Reporters every weekend and I’ve noticed for years that he has racist overtones in his opinions, especially his “parting shots”.

    Just my own numbnuts opinion.

  99. Peterson and Mendenhall…

    Really?!? The slave trade? Oh, thast’s right because both of you were slaves and have direct knowledge of what it’s like to be one, right?

    Last time I checked, slavery was abolished in 1865…

    Keep counting your millions and keep us entertained…

  100. memphisyinzer ….Please excuse Deb. She is an expert on everything from aardvarks to zymurgy!

  101. Deb and some thinking people simply twist words to meet their ends.

    NFL players don’t have to play in the NFL. They can play elsewhere. They can take a totally different job.The slaves not so much. If an NFL player wants to quit he can at any time. A slave not so much.

  102. goldsteel says:
    Mar 17, 2011 11:44 PM
    I can’t speak for or against what Rashard Mendenhall said since I’m not involved in the game. I also haven’t lived Rashard’s life and therefore don’t have his perspective about the NFL/NFLPA contract issues. And frankly, neither has anyone else on the message board.

    Wow heavy./sarc

    Puhleez he made stupid comments and we can respond .

    Now don’t respond as you have not walked in my shoes. /sarc

  103. @memphisyinzer …

    It’s been my experience that the censors haven’t minded letting other commenters call me a wh*r* but I haven’t been allowed to speak back to them, so I have a little sensitivity there. I don’t think I’m smarter than everyone else and I don’t resort to name-calling anymore often than the male posters. It just seems to bother people more when I do it. You are entitled to your opinion about Rhoden. As I’ve said several times, I don’t agree with the “slavery” theory, but am simply pointing out that the players had a rationale for making the analogy.

    @pervyharvin … No, I’m not an expert on everything. I can be conned just like everyone else. That’s why I couldn’t trust the owners in a negotiation. I know no matter how much people say they’re good guys, usually they’re lying through their teeth and just looking for an opportunity to drive the knife in up to the hilt. And I sure don’t know why. Guess I’m not an expert on anything.

    @jameson64 … Real men drink John Powers.

  104. @luckywi …

    I gave that post of yours a thumbs up. Why didn’t you say that the first time instead of launching a personal attack? Lovely way to end my day. 🙁 Two fellow Steelers fans, jameson64 and memphisyinzer, who never read your slam at me and know nothing about my long history with the PFT censors couldn’t wait to damn me for calling a man a numbnut. (I can always count on a certain faction within the Steelers fanbase to eviscerate me over nothing; such fan loyalty.) And my old “friend” pervyharvin–the guy I’ve always defended–couldn’t wait to pile on; nothing like backstabbing a buddy for a laugh. As a judge of character, it’s obvious I don’t know everything, isn’t it? 🙂

    Anyway … where did you get the idea I didn’t comment until it involved a Steeler? I’ve commented nonstop in support of the players since they decertified. And I commented when Peterson said it. I said the analogy was stupid but otherwise maintained my defense of the players’ position. But I had thought Peterson was just, as they say, playing the slavery card. Until Mendenhall referenced The Nation, I didn’t realize there was a rationale behind Peterson’s comments. All I’ve been saying since then is that they’re speaking from a rational place and not just mouthing off. I don’t agree with them but I get where they’re coming from.

    Surely you’ve had that experience–disagreeing with people but still understanding where they’re coming from? I don’t find anything conflicting about that. I disagree with people politically all the time, but still study their positions enough to understand why they feel as they do.

    The only kind of people I don’t understand at all are those who go out of their way to hurt others for no reason.

  105. Well said, goombar2, but if you post more on this remember to mention Rod Graves, Arizona Cardinals GM. He and Coach Whisenhunt have had a lot of success for the NFL’s oldest franchise.

  106. The comparison might have some merit if they were comparing slaves to Michael Vick’s dogs and not million dollar athletes with rockstar lifestyles. These guys need a serious reality check, and depending on the length of the strike and how much money they have managed to save, they may just get one!

  107. Maybe my history classes didn’t teach my enough about slavery, but the last time I checked they didn’t get paid millions of dollars!!

  108. Wow! If there are ever two players that need to go back to college and take some history classes, it is Mendenhall and Petersen. Obviously, you both don’t have a clue how good you have it.

  109. i think what’s interesting about this whole debate is the fact that everyone’s focused on the money they make for playing. i think the only real difference worth mentioning is the CHOICE these young men have to participate or not. the compensation argument falls short for me because slave owners could essentially use the same argument and say slavery wasnt really that bad because they gave the slaves free room and board for their trouble.
    i think the comparison they should have more clearly articulated are the parallels between the two situations (Rashard did in fact do that). As i said, the choice they have to play is what will forever make the two issues parallel to one another, however, some interesting points to consider:
    1. though they are handsomely rewarded, their worth is only fractionally decided by their intelligence, integrity, and character, and almost exclusively by their physical attributes and prowess
    2. i tend to believe players when they talk about how coaches and other superiors address and speak to them in a demeaning tone. I would feel naive to believe that coaches who are earning less in salary than some of the players they coach are not speaking in derogatory tones the players. if for no other reason than to establish who is really running things.
    3. there’s no doubt that on a human rights level, the two situations are not even close, nor do they belong in the same discussion, parallel or not. there’s just no merit in it.
    4. many of these players are preyed upon in a way. NFL money and status are a way for many of them to escape an otherwise not-so-glamorous upbringing. we market the nfl dream to young kids from all walks of life, but there are only a few that will make it. Many of them waste their chance at free education in an effort to get their piece of the dream while they can. Its easy for those of us with educations and regular jobs to sit behind a keyboard and call these guys stupid for passing up on their free education. but truth be told, if you could get a job doing whatever you studied in college making exorbitant amounts of money without having to finish your degree, you’d jump at it. particularly when the longer you stay in college could potentially influence the amount of time you will be able to make that kind of money.
    many of those kids sign contracts that they dont fully understand. they’re loaded with incentives, bonuses that they’re unlikely to reach, tiered payment schedules, nullifying clauses, etc. i’m willing to bet that they see the final numbers and just cant wait to sign. who can blame them? they’ve seen so many before them get rich without an education and probably say to themselves “Hey, why not me? I dont need to go to school to get paid. I can just get real good at football and let that determine my worth.” it’s sad, but true.

    i think the guys who have spoken up about it definitely should have left slavery completely out of their commentary. playing in the league isnt slavery, and even mentioning slavery distracts and detracts from the point they were probably trying to make.

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