Derelict Junction

Providing missile launch codes for foreign cryptographers everywhere.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Smilin' Again.

Okay, I'm not going to gloat about the Patriots pounding the Colts last weekend after all the "experts" picked them to lose. Believe me, reading all the coverage this morning was gratifying enough without gloating.

I would like to point out someone no one factored in before the game, but ended up dictating it once it started. Without talking about his performance yesterday, which was the best game he played all year, let me just point out his season is all about getting a second chance (or third, or fourth...).

Corey Dillon had never made the playoffs with his former team, the Cincinatti Bengals, but on a personal level, he was very successful. He even set the single-game rushing record there, until it was broken the next year by Jamaal Lewis. Ultimately, though, the losing took its toll. In an article on Dillon's wife said she hadn't seen him smile in six years, until he started playing for the Patriots.

Here's a guy who at age 15 was arrested for selling crack cocaine in his hometown of Seattle. He had a rocky college career, once even accusing his former University of Washington coaches of bad-mouthing him to pro scouts. In Cincinatti, he was branded with the nick-name "Corey Villain". When he publicly asked for a trade from the Bengals after last season and someone asked him where he'd like to play he said it didn't matter. "I'd rather flip burgers" than play in Cincinatti. When told he was traded to Patriots and asked if the Bengals made a fair trade, he said "They could've traded me for a pizza, it wouldn't have mattered to me."

Suddenly, he was on a team that required its players put the team first and their egos second. There was much speculation whether he would be able to buy into the Patriots' "team philosophy" after causing so much trouble in Cincinatti. But he did. In fact, he became an instant leader. What was initially thought of as selfishness in Cincinatti, turned out to be mere frustration with losing.

Whether he wins again this weekend, and goes onto the Super Bowl, or bows out to the Steelers, he's finally gotten a taste of winning.Posted by Hello