Fran Who?

Warning! Rant about to begin:

In a story on Bleacher Report, Fran Tarkenton (Hall of Fame Quarterback, no less) is quoted as saying that Buccaneers QB Josh Freeman is ‘God awful’ and that ‘he can’t play!’

Josh Freeman in practice with the 2012 Buccaneers

Let me tell you something about people who give their opinions where it is not wanted.  When you give blanket statements like that to the media, you are perceived as an arrogant asshole. (Pardon my French, maybe I should have said it as an arrogant trou du cul!)

Most of the time, because of your status, people will hang on your every word. You speak words that tickle their eardrums, because they long for controversy. You have people who would like to have you on their show because of something you have done in the past. You have achieved something.

Is the league comparable to when you played the game, Mr. T? Are defenses any faster now than when you played?

Now let’s get to some football facts…

Fran Tarkenton has a career completion percentage of 57.0 compared to Josh Freeman’s percentage of 58.8 (granted, this is comparing 18 years to 4 years). The most yards thrown in a season by Fran Tarkenton is 3468 with 25 touchdowns (with 32 interceptions) in 1978, while Josh Freeman threw for 3592 yards and 16 touchdowns (with 22 interceptions) in 2011 (a bad year for Josh) and then he threw for 4065 yards and 27 touchdowns (with 17 interceptions) in 2012 (yes, that is pretty good for someone who can’t play). And even in 2010, Josh Freeman came close to Fran Tarkenton’s numbers with 3451 yards and 25 touchdowns (with only 6 interceptions)…

Look, I know you had to come up with something to talk about for the radio show you were booked to speak on. And since the show was in Tampa, why not pick on the one man who could use a little encouragement from a Hall of Famer? His numbers look better than yours did in your prime… and yet you say he is God awful?

Josh Freeman press conferenceAt the press conference where the media were foaming at the mouth to find out what Josh Freeman’s reaction would be, they immediately pounced on him and asked him if he had heard what Fran Tarkenton had said about him. When they told him what was said, he seemed to deflate for a moment, before calmly telling the media that while Fran Tarkenton’s record speaks for itself, the only opinion that mattered to him was that of his coaches and his team. Then he dropped the subject. Personally, I think that is a class act (from Freeman, not Tarkenton).

Update: According to – Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy had some words to say to the critics of Josh Freeman: Back off!