LeSean McCoy apparently forgets the Mike Vick era in Philly

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Bills running back LeSean McCoy made some waves on Thursday by offering up an opinion on Colin Kaepernick that usually flows not from NFL players — the notion that Kaepernick’s talent doesn’t outweigh the distractions. Setting aside whether Kaepernick should be regarded as a bundle of actual distractions (and ignoring the question of whether any of these supposed “distractions” actually affect football players who face the ultimate distraction every Sunday during the season, when someone physically tries to stop them from executing their assignment with thousands watching in person and millions watching at home), McCoy’s comments were curious, for one specific reason.

No, this isn’t about the distractions McCoy periodically has created, including most recently the investigation that nearly resulted in criminal charges for assaulting an off-duty police officer. This is about the distractions that McCoy experienced when the Eagles brought Mike Vick to Philadelphia after two years in custody for dogfighting.

For McCoy’s Eagles, Vick’s distractions clearly outweighed his perceived talent as of 2009. But the Eagles embraced Vick without hesitation or reservation — and without engaging in a prolonged fit of public neurosis over whether they should or shouldn’t sign him.

“[I]t’s the chaos that comes with it,” McCoy said Thursday of Kaepernick. “It’s a lot. A team’s trying to win and not have a distraction on a team. As a player, there’s certain players that can be on a team with big distractions, and other players, they’re not good enough that it’s worth it. I think his situation is, not good enough to have on a team with all the attention that comes along with it.”

Vick, nearly three years removed from playing football of any kind, wasn’t nearly good enough to justify the “chaos” that came with bringing a convicted dogfighter and admitted dogkiller to town. But the Eagles did, and McCoy (who was only a rookie at the time) never said a word about it.

So Vick was able to get a job as a backup quarterback in only weeks before the start of football season despite substantial distractions (and flat-out illegal, immoral, and sociopathic behavior) but Kaepernick can’t, due to “distractions” arising from an exercise of rights that violate no laws or NFL rules — and he plans to stand for the anthem in 2017.

The newest argument emerging in NFL circles is that the efforts by some in the media and groups like the NAACP to point out that Kaepernick is getting screwed add to the distraction. But what are people who genuinely believe Kaepernick is getting screwed supposed to do? Pipe down and ignore it?

That’s the overriding message that permeates so much of the modern NFL. The league and its teams want to be able to do whatever they want to do, without scrutiny or criticism or second-guessing of any kind. The fact that the scrutiny and criticism and second-guessing make Kaepernick even less desirable than a convicted dogfighter and admitted dogkiller confirms that the league and its teams have bungled this situation as badly as anything the league and its teams have bungled in recent years.

60 responses to “LeSean McCoy apparently forgets the Mike Vick era in Philly

  1. It’s easy to forget. He only had good games against the worst defenses in the league at the time.

    You know, sort of like his entire crap career.

    What a loser.

  2. the distraction argument is weak at best. but the salary vs role is important. the backlash from community first if signed (by one group) then if not played (by another group) is a primary concern. finally, altering a playbook to fit the skill set may be substantial, but come on, we’ve all seen it done before, so i really think its salary and fan backlash

  3. Despite what he had done — and officially paid for with his time in jail — Vick still had enough talent to be a starting QB, and that was worth the headache that came with signing him to play for the Eagles. Kaepernick does *NOT* have the talent to be a starting QB any more, and that makes him *NOT* worth the headache of signing him to be a backup.

  4. “For McCoy’s Eagles, Vick’s distractions clearly outweighed his perceived talent as of 2009”

    Nice try at some revisionist history. In Vick’s previous season he threw for 2500 yards 20 TDs and had one of the greatest rushing years a QB has ever had with over 1000 yards. That is EXACTLY why Vick’s distraction was tolerated. He had talent.

  5. That’s not really a good argument. Vick played really well for Philly and basically kept his head down and said the right things. His past was a distraction, but not his behavior at the time. He was in the running for MVP at a few points. When he tried out that must have seen that he still had what it took and that level of talent led them to take a chance, which paid off.

    If he couldn’t play there’s not a chance it the world they would have taken the risk.

    It actually proves McCoy’s point.

  6. Or maybe McCoy DOES remember the Vick era in Philadelphia. He was only a rookie so it was all new to him but maybe he does have a great sense of how distractions affected the team. Maybe he knows it better than a lot of others, better than anyone who didn’t have to live it every day. Without naming Vick, perhaps he doesn’t want to wish the distractions on anyone trying to pursue an NFL career.

  7. But didn’t Vick have his best year with the Eagles the following season?

    But what makes me chuckle is that while Kaep was playing for the Niners, before the anthem protest, 90% of football fans thought he sucked. Now all of a sudden people think he is a top 10 QB and he is getting black balled because he is black. You cant make this stuff up. Even when they were going to the NFCCG and the Super Bowl, he didn’t carry the team, he was just along for the ride (think Trent Dilfer SB Champ with the Ravens). Cleveland is desperate for a QB, has multiple players taking part in the same kind of protest that Kaep was, has an African American coach, and STILL doesn’t want him. Think about that. The team with one of the biggest needs at QB. With a black coach. With multiple players doing the same thing. DOESNT WANT HIM… Speaks very loudly to me

  8. I mosty agree Vick wasnt that great….but he lit it up that year. I drafted him in the last round of my fantasy football draft as backup to Kolb….He ended up being one of the highest scoring FF players. Dont think Kaep does that.

  9. bullcharger says:
    August 25, 2017 at 9:57 am
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    That’s not really a good argument. Vick played really well for Philly and basically kept his head down and said the right things. His past was a distraction, but not his behavior at the time. He was in the running for MVP at a few points. When he tried out that must have seen that he still had what it took and that level of talent led them to take a chance, which paid off.
    If he couldn’t play there’s not a chance it the world they would have taken the risk.
    It actually proves McCoy’s point.


    In addition, if the last time we saw Kaepernick on a football field was 2012, based on the way he played he would have been scooped up at the start of free agency. Conversely if Vick had played terribly before going to prison there is no way he would have gotten a second chance.

  10. Well, Vick was a better player. He also served hard time for his crimes and paid his debt to society. Vick and the Eagles don’t negate anything McCoy said. And I’m sure there were teams at the time who didn’t want anything to do with Vick due to the “distractions.”

    Taking it pretty far to say animal fighting is “sociopathic” though. I think it’s awful personally, but let’s save “sociopath” for the actual sociopaths, shall we?

  11. Reading this article was distraction, it was all over the place, I personally don’t care if he ever gets to play again, go out and get a real job like the rest of and move on with life.

  12. Colin Kaepernick is 3-16 in his last 19 starts.

    Mike Vick went 8-3 and made the probowl in his first year as a starter in Philly. He was worth the issue.

  13. Yeah Vick did horrible things to those animals, and I am an animal lover, BUT, Kap is playing with peoples emotions in relation to Human Being lives, Just as those animals deserved better, our fallen servicemen and women deserve better.

  14. beavertonsteve says:
    August 25, 2017 at 9:56 am
    “For McCoy’s Eagles, Vick’s distractions clearly outweighed his perceived talent as of 2009”

    Nice try at some revisionist history. In Vick’s previous season he threw for 2500 yards 20 TDs and had one of the greatest rushing years a QB has ever had with over 1000 yards. That is EXACTLY why Vick’s distraction was tolerated. He had talent.
    – – – –

    I was a fan of Vuick’s but let’s not white-wash his career.

    Most of his early years, he was well under 50% completion percentage. He had one playoff win. He was not a pocket passer, and the zone-read hadn’t even been introduced in the NFL yet. He also was hurt a lot (that happens when you are only 6′ and a little over200 lbs, as opposed to, say, 6’5″ and 230 like a certain unemployed ex-49er QB). Oh, and one other “little” thing: he was a convicted felon.

    The ironic thing is, while Vick had some protesters (mainly, animal-rights folks), he was largely accepted by most Americans.

    Compare that to Colin Kapernick’s situation.

    He’s signficantly bigger, has better passing stats and has taken his team to a Super Bowl. A large swath of the US population despises Kaepernick for staging a NONVIOLENT protest. Fans can sit here and clamor for the days of Mike Vick, but Colin is a better QB who has a spotless off-the-field record. He’s not the “cancer” some fans (who have never stepped foot in an NFL locker room) claim. He’s not asking for too much money, as has been speculated. And, according to Hall of Fame GM Ozzie Newsome and Super Bowl winning coachs John Harbaugh and Pete Carroll, he’s good enough to play (and in Carroll’s opinion, START) in the NFL.

  15. @beavertonesteve
    Kaep had 59% 2241 yd 16 TD and nearly 468 yd running 2td in 11 games. Vick 52% 2475 yd 20 TD 1039 yd 2td 16 games.
    Avg Kaep for 16 games 3259 yd 23 TD 680 yd 3td
    3939 yd 26 total TD vs 3514 yd total 22 TD
    Keep trying bro.

  16. @siriusred67 how do you figure kap isnt good enough to be a backup qb. He has led teams to the NFC championship game and was only one play away from winning a championship. Yet foolish people like you continue to say the same regurgitated crap over and over again as if that makes it true. Kap has proven more than 85% of the qbs starting let alone the backups. The ignorance shown in comments is bordering on insanity

  17. I mosty agree Vick wasnt that great….but he lit it up that year. I drafted him in the last round of my fantasy football draft as backup to Kolb….He ended up being one of the highest scoring FF players. Dont think Kaep does that.

    IT IS ONE THING TO ENJOY FANTASY FOOTBALL!!! BUT PLEASE DONT EVER COMPARE REAL GAME PLAYING AND THAT FANTASY GARBAGE!!! IT IS CALLED FANTASY FOR A REASON. PLEASE KEEP THE TWO SEPARATE. So many people today consider fantasy value as an evaluator of QB and other player talent. Half of which can be garbage time stats!!! This is a playoff based game and nothing else really matter. It is a game of matchups!!! Vick and Kaep have been to and won playoff games.

  18. While I agree that Vick at the time was far more talented than CK is currently, it is also worth noting that distractions in 2009 were not nearly as distracting as they have become in 2017. The increased involvement in social media and the social unrest following Trump’s election have made for a far more intolerant world that reacts quickly and loudly to any and all perceived injustices. When Vick was brought onto the team, the worst the Eagles faced were some scathing articles and malcontents with signs in the parking lot. Today’s protesters are far more malicious in their tactics and represent a far greater threat to profitability than they did in 2009 and thus no team wants to focus such attentions on themselves and face reprisal for each and every interaction with a player that could be taken as a slight (e.g. what happens if he gets demoted to 3rd string? What happens if he guts cut?). He’s just not worth the headache.

  19. Lightning in a bottle would describe Kaep’s career. Like a firework, bright, but over in an instant.

  20. McCoy still makes a valid point as to why he isn’t signed. He would be a backup anywhere outside of Jacksonville, and no team wants that much attention and distraction from a backup. He is better than many backups but those backups don’t have players being peppered with questions about them. Stop banging the Kaep drum so hard.

  21. That’s a silly comparison. Vick was a much better player when he came to Philly than Kaepernick has ever been. Vick had obviously matured a lot from his experiences, while Kaepernick has done nothing but regress in both maturity and play since he has entered the league.

  22. But what are people who genuinely believe Kaepernick is getting screwed supposed to do? Pipe down and ignore it?

    Is this guy serious? They’re supposed to encourage him to move on… pursue other endeavors… that’s life… Oh he still wants to play football? Fine…plenty of other football leagues….explore those avenues…

    We aren’t all what we wanted to be growing up… but that’s life…

  23. Most name quarterbacks get multiple chances to fail.
    Think Matt Moore, Dan orlovsky, Curtis Painter, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum, Kelly Holcomb, TJ Yates, Christian Ponder, Josh McCown, Scott Tolkien, Steve Beueliein, Wade Wilson, Trent Dilfer, Matt Hasselback, Ryan Mallett, Tom Savage, Boyce Petty, Derek Anderson, Mike Glennon.
    See, crummy QBs get to keep trying. Kay could actually take the right team to the SB, or not. But he isn’t signed because he’s protesting core beliefs. It’s called mass hysteria when a general belief like respecting the flag becomes more important than the belief it represents, that e are a free country.
    The real fear now is, what if Kap gets signed and wins the SB if Brady gets injured; you know BB remembers Kap eviscerating the Patriots in Gillette. On MNF. Better play it safe and keep him off the field and sign Sean Mannion or Jon Kitna, or Kyle Orton, or Blaine Gabbert, or Bob Lee, or Jay Fiedler, or AJ Feeley, or Kyle Boller.
    Get it?

  24. Vick broke the law. He paid for it with 2 yrs. of his life and showed remorse for his crimes. Most people were willing to give him a second chance. Kap only exercised his right to express himself. A very large majority of people vehemently disagree with his stance. His statement about standing this year hasn’t been enough for most. He also left his job voluntarily, not fired. That was a major mistake.
    More importantly to coaches, Vick could take over a game by himself. Kap never had or will have that talent.

  25. The biggest difference I remember between these two was that Vick openly said time and again that he wanted to get back in the League. That he (Mike Vick) wanted to play & was willing to do whatever he had to to get on a team. I remember Vick doing a little media tour & interviews & the such to get it out there that he wanted to play.
    It’s ironic that the quietest voice in the loudest sports debate/protest/issue is that of the guy who’s the reason for all of the noise. Kaep is completely MIA for all of this. No interviews, NO direct quotes. NO NOTHING. Everybody else is championing for him & he is off the grid for the most part. All the quotes are from sources & people near him & what-not. When is HE going to come out & say he wants to play again?
    Conversely, is this exactly what he wants for his movement? It is more prevalent than ever with him NOT playing or on a team cause it fanned the flame all over rather than just the media swarming him & him alone with it staying local or just a 1 minute blurb on national TV.
    He’s got Hank Arron speaking up on his behalf & some 50+ guys taking a stand/seat/knee/fist this week during games all over the country. It’s not just “all Eyez on Me” anymore. It’s all eyes on everyone & more voices for the cause.
    He heard the rumbling that his actions became bigger than his cause. Maybe now his cause becomes bigger with everyone’s combined actions???

  26. Yeah, the main comment by McCoy that I thought made his whole comments bull crap was that Vick was 10 times better than Kaepernick when he was signed by the Eagles. If you compare their stats you can see that, if anything, Kaepernick might be a little better than Vick as a passer. Here are the comparisons between Vick’s totals from 2001 to 2006, before he was suspended for two seasons and then signed by the Eagles in 2009, and Kaepernick’s career from 2011 to 2016:

    Vick Kaepernick
    Games 74 69
    Completions 930 1,011
    Attempts 1,730 1,692
    Comp. % 53.8% 59.8%
    Yards per Att 6.7 7.3
    Yards per Comp 12.4 12.1
    TDs 71 72
    TDs per Game .96 1.04
    INTs 52 30
    INTs per game .70 .43
    TD/INT Ratio 1.3 2.4
    Sacks 187 171
    Sacks per G 2.5 2.5
    Yds lost due 1,153 1,060
    to sack
    Yds lost per 6.2 6.2
    Rush Att 529 375
    Rush Yds 3,859 2,300
    Rush Yds per 7.2 6.1

    To me, Kaepernick and Vick are pretty similar QBs, except Kaepernick is a little bigger and is likely to have more durability than Vick. Vick had a little better yards per rush average, but Kaepernick has a better completion percentage, more yards per pass attempt, and a much better TD to Interception ratio than Vick did before he was signed by the Eagles. If an NFL team can sign Vick after two years off because he was in jail, worse stats than Kaepernick and all the distractions that surrounded him due to his dog fighting activities, it is inconceivable that no team is signing Kaepernick.

  27. LeSean is the last person to talk about being a distraction. From his constant run-ins with trouble to his social media presence, “Shady” has been in the news for all the wrong things. If you want to talk about a self-centered person who thinks they are above people, LeSean is your guy.

  28. Vick murdered his dogs. They weren’t my dogs. Kaepernick slapped me , law enforcement, and military directly in the face. He won’t get a dime from me if he comes to my team. It’s that simple and the NFL knows it.

  29. There’s a point when fighting this Kaepernick battle just isn’t worth it. The ‘freedom fighters’ who somehow think it’s their job to scuttle injustice from a keyboard don’t seem to understand that this issue just isn’t that important and doesn’t hold much resonance for the rest of us. But it does have the potential to push fans away. If the NFL loses its luster, it will be because the fans who supported the league stop doing so because the league got overrun by social justice issues.

  30. I’m seriously LOLing at these comments about Vick being better than Kap.

    Vick’s last season before prison (16 games):
    Comp: 52.6%, YDS: 2,474, TD: 20, INT: 13, Rating: 75.7

    Kap last year (12 games):
    Comp: 59.2%, YDS: 2,241, TD: 16, INT: 4, Rating: 90.7

  31. The distraction argument is not weak. This is how a veteran player views Kaepernick and that’s what teams want to avoid. He is not good enough to bring in along with his baggage. Mike Vick was way more talented than Kaepernick and that’s why he was signed even after most of the public hated him. It shows owners only want to win and don’t care much about the rest. Kaepernicks success was largely due to the coach and system which are both out of the NFL along with the dummy that is Colin Kaepernick!

  32. Kaepernick really should find ways to get in front of a camera and talk about football and anything else he wants, but we have the word of a number of other people about how he’s being kept from doing this thing he wants to do. But does he, really? Between Mike Vick and this guy there was the phenomenon known as Tim Tebow, who remains widely loved and highly regarded as a person, but who found himself unable to find a team to play for, even though he’d taken a team to the playoffs and won a postseason game or 2. But they had to build the offense around his set of skills that are not those of a prototypical NFL QB. With Kaepernick, a team would not only have to do that but deal with all sorts of distractions, and for a guy who would be a backup. He is not good enough for all that trouble. Vick was. And Vick offered up the lesson of a guy who owned up to his wrong and paid a price in years and millions of dollars for it. This guy doesn’t think he did anything regrettable, and maybe he didn’t. But lots of people think he did. If he wants to play again — and who knows if he does — he needs to explain himself at the very least to the people who think he has disrespected the police and armed forces.

    The people who own these teams are not running some governments in a benighted backwater, where they need to answer to a set of rules and regs other than what they have agreed to among themselves and with their employees. This is not James Meredith integrating Ole Miss. The NFL is a business, and it is not breaking any laws that I have ever heard of. If people don’t like this Kaepernick thing, they don’t have to go to the games or watch them on TV. It is really nutty of Florio to take up this cause when there are so many others where there really is some kind of moral issue. If Kaepernick could win games and/or increase attendance in excess of what the owners think these other QBs who have jobs can, he would have a job. But, again, we knew Vick desperately wanted to come back and play; how do we know this guy does? He has said bupkis about that

  33. The NFL is doing Kaepernick and the world a favor. His heart is obviously more with social justice issues than with playing football. Having a football career would put a hold on his important work in the social justice field — that’s real life and not a game. I, for one, hope his full time devotion to his cause brings about the change he so desperately seeks.

  34. What about Shady’s ” Football Camp ” NO SHOWS , where he took upfront money and never showed up

  35. People feel that Colin Kaepernick hates America. He never apologized for wearing “Cops are pigs” socks and a Che Guevara shirt. Until he makes it clear he LOVES America (despite our flaws) he will remain at home.

  36. Uhm…pretty sure that only proves Shady’s point further! Teams will take a chance if there’s talent. Vick lost his job to the penal system. Colin Kaepernick lost his job to Blaine Gabbert. Big difference there! Vick also returned to Pro Bowl form, albeit for only a short time.

  37. @richabbs

    Your post would make perfect sense if anyone felt Kaepernick was still capbable of producing those stats. Remember, he did lose his job to Blaine Gabbert (yes…Blaine Gabbert) before kneeling for the anthem.

  38. Well, one big difference is that Vick himself publicly lobbied very hard to get back in the league. Maybe Kaep should try that and see what happens?

  39. Vick paid the price and served his time in jail for what he did, he also apologized many many times for what he did. Crapernick HAS NOT! If his whole protest was so important to him, why the sudden change of heart to NOT take a knee this year? Is what he was protesting now all of a sudden no longer an issue? If so, then the “issue” to begin with was a non-issue!

  40. I think ur the one forgetting it. Vick was a distraction. He caused the whole team to be questioned n caused a problem between Mcnabb and Reid. Mccoy has the right and the experience to speak on distractions bc he had to play through one.

  41. It’s not that Vick played well in Philly, it’s that after 2-3 years in prison, he actually got a chance….after committing a felony. Kaep isn’t guilty of anything but ruffling the feathers of closet bigots who are too afraid to admit they just don’t care about racism so they hide behind the strawmen of the flags derrrr the troops derrr he opted out derrrr he’s not good enough.

  42. The most glaring difference comes with the dates. in 2009 people were less offended than they are today. We are removing statues that have been in place for 100’s of years for crying out loud because they’re suddenly offensive!

  43. Jim Brown on Kaepernick

    “I want to be in his corner, and I do think, ‘God bless him’ — but noting, “Colin has to make up his mind whether he’s truly an activist or he’s a football player.”
    “Football is commercial. You have owners. You have fans. And you want to honor that if you’re making that kind of money.”

    “I can’t be two things at once that contradict each other. If I sign for money, then the people I sign with, they have rules and regulations.”

    As for the protest, Brown says … “I’m going to give you the real deal: I’m an American. I don’t desecrate my flag and my national anthem.”

    “I’m not gonna do anything against the flag and national anthem. I’m going to work within those situations. But this is my country, and I’ll work out the problems, but I’ll do it in an intelligent manner.”

  44. This game has made this guy a millionaire many times over. Not only that, it has made 100s, if not 1000s of African-American men, millionaires. Why would anyone like that want to burn it all down? The answer is that it is not he that wants to do that. It is all these people for whom the sport of football represents values of toughness, aggressiveness, physical courage and testing that are anathema to them. I love Jim Brown, and he is a smart, idealistic and courageous man. He would have been successful at anything he tried, but where would he have been without his professional football career? His fortune and his ability to make a difference in the world derive from that. What’s more, he knows it. The NFL is a commercial enterprise, not a public institution. Its purpose is to make its owners billionaires and many of its employees millionaires. Its purpose is not to advance any political cause or agenda. As soon as someone is hired for just such a reason, the whole shebang is put in jeopardy Mr. Brown knows that, and so does Mr. McCoy.

  45. “The fact that the scrutiny and criticism and second-guessing make Kaepernick even less desirable than a convicted dogfighter…”

    It’s not the scrutiny and second guessing that make him undesirable bc you can get past that; that’s what people aren’t understanding.

    It’s that you would have to revamp your entire style of offense, on the eve of the season. You CAN’T do that.

    That problem wasn’t present with Vick because they told him straight up, you’re gonna do things our way, our philosophy. Vick said yes. And Vick became a pocket passer who ran only when he had to or when the opportunity was too great to pass up. He did the damage with his arm, the Eagles’ way, when he revamped his career in Philly.

    They didn’t have to revamp anything. He revamped himself. In the case of Kap, you would have to revamp for him and you can’t do that unless you’re a rebuilding team who just hired your new coach who happens to have an offensive history that happens to fit Kap and it’s February.

    I’m sorry if that’s a logical reason.

  46. Vick was a freak before he went to jail. Forget the numbers, throw them in the trash. That Atlanta team was dangerous every year, for one reason, and one reason only. Vick. Every other part of their team was average at best, but Vick was basically unstoppable. All you could do was contain him, and hope your offense did their thing

    Kapernick, even when he was going to 2 straight NFCC games, was never even close to the level Vick was pre-prison

    Besides, Vick went to jail for a crime and paid his debt to society. His skill level was never in doubt. Kapernick is the same idiot he was last year, and his skills are, rightfully, in question

  47. Are you completely forgetting the fact that Vick was signed 3 years after his incident? People forget and move on. Give it 3 years, maybe the outcry over Kaepernick will have died down by then enough for his talent to outweigh the headache. This is a poor comparison.

  48. This is different than Vick, so different that it’s simply not comparable. There was absolute consensus that what Vick did was wrong. Even Vick admitted it. It was also in the past. The only people making noise were those who don’t believe in second chances.

    The Kaepernick protest has no consensus; indeed, the country is divided. Also, it isn’t in the past, it’s ongoing — a persistent distraction.

    The divide over Vick was whether to forgive and allow a man to be redeemed. The Kaepernick situation requires tolerance for something that many people — in good faith, I believe — find intolerable. The other half do not. Everyone agrees that dog fighting is wrong.

  49. I’m sorry, don’t teams have a right to sign someone or not based on their own interests?? And if so, then what are we talking about here? Thanks.

  50. Man oh man does Jimmy Brown hit the nail on the head. Then he pulls out the nail and hits it on the head again just for good measure.

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