The NFLPA. . .or whatever it is they're calling themselves now, exactly. . .held a rookie symposium this past week, and while not every rookie in the NFL attended, it sounds like a pretty decent percentage of them showed up. Among the attendees was Vikings' quarterback Christian Ponder. Ponder said that, after talking with some of his fellow rookies, financial concerns are beginning to creep into the backs of their minds.
"Guys are hurting for money right now. . .It's a crazy time, especially with the uncertainty of when we're going to start and get some money in our pocket."
My favorite part about this sort of thing is the reaction it elicits from people like the commenters on the Pro Football Talk story about the situation. Many of the comments are along the lines of "Oh, we're so sorry that you can't get paid millions of dollars to play a game. Go get a real job."
Here's the thing. . .Christian Ponder, and the other 253 players that were drafted two months ago, have jobs. The fact that they can't get paid for their jobs yet is not their fault. I mean, if we were talking about some guy that busted his tail for four years to get a degree in accounting and then the entire banking industry went on strike before he could find employment, would these same people be saying "Oh, I'm so sorry that you can't get paid to work at the local bank. Go get a real job."
Sounds a lot like the anti-stadium whiners at places like the Star-Tribune's web site, to be honest. In both cases, short-sightedness seems to be overriding common sense.
Incidentally, in Ponder's case, he got a degree in finance in two and a half years, got an MBA after that, and is working on his second graduate degree. . .so, if he had to "go out and get a real job," my guess is that he'd do just fine for himself. Fortunately, for the time being, he's the quarterback of the Minnesota Vikings.