Every once in a while, a quiet, off-the-field moment transcends sport. On Wednesday, former New York Giants running back Brandon Jacobs tweeted about a letter he received from a six-year old Giants fan named Joseph who sent him $3.36 to stay in New York.
Joseph asked his mother why Jacobs left to play in San Francisco. She explained the Giants didn’t have enough money to keep him, so Joseph emptied his piggy bank and wrote Jacobs a letter. It reads:
“Dear Brandon Jacobs, So you could go to the Giants, here is my money. Love, Joe”
Jacobs tweeted he almost cried when he saw the letter and may pay a surprise visit to Joseph. I hope he finds the time to follow through on that visit. Too often we see players whose only loyalty seems to be to the almighty dollar. We hear a lot of talk about being a part of a team and how money is not the issue.
The late, great George Young, former NY Giants GM who brought us the Parcells era, once said it’s always about money and when players say it’s not about money, then it’s REALLY about money. He also said the NFL is not a business of well adjusted people. This combination adds up to grown up people acting very juvenile on a very public stage. It’s a scene we see all too often.
Fortunately, Jacobs exit from New York was relatively drama free. He was willing to take a pay cut to stay in New York. But in the end, the two sides were unable to come to terms. I think most of us understand it was time for Jacobs to move on.
But Joseph doesn’t understand salary caps. Paying $5 million a year to a back up running back isn’t on his radar. He only understands he was willing to give everything he has to keep his hero in blue.
By that measure, Joseph is a bigger Giants fan than all of us. Unfortunately, even Joseph will soon mature past his own standard. But it was fun seeing the NFL through his eyes one more time…even it’s only for a little while. And I hope Jacobs gives Joseph his $3.36 back!