JaMarcus Russel: It’s Time To Leave Him Alone

JaMarcus Russel is 25 years old. He's a millionaire 39 times over, and hes gotten a lot further than he could have ever expected growing up.

He has become the new face of the draft bust, and has taken a hefty beating for it. He has almost no support, and my guess is he will never mount a comeback. So in speaking in behalf of him, Id like to offer some different perspective.

All he did wrong was not live up to the hype. He was supposed to be the next great quarterback to bring the Raiders to another Lombardi. Watching him play at LSU, I bought into the  hype myself. But is that his fault?

No, not really.

Did he gamble? No, that was Pete Rose. To this day Pete Rose has many supporters standing behind him.

Did he test positive for banned substances? No, he did not. However, I can name several players who have admitted to steroid use. In fact, I still see their jerseys at the stadium.

Has he started fights? Had run ins with the law, murdered anybody? Raped anybody? No! He has not, but since I'm on that topic , all three of those have busts in pro football's hall of fame.

So let me think about this one, and you do the same. If your new neighbor could be:

A. A murderer
B. A drug abuser
c. A gambler
D. A criminal
E. A football player who didn't play as well as advertised. 

I think we would  all choose E.

So is it fair that JaMarcus Russel deserves the wrath for his poor performance? Do you think he chose to throw interceptions, and play poorly? Do you think he should be the whipping boy of the NFL? My answer on all three is "no!"

Okay, it's a fair comparison between Ryan Leaf and Russel for draft busts, but honestly, Leaf got what he had coming. The guy was a jerk. He's had many run-ins with the law, drug problems, and personality flaws. Russel has not.

I'm not saying Russel is a saint. I do think he should have b...

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