Random Pro of the Week: Eugene Robinson
Here’s the rule: Any distraction before the Super Bowl will cause you to have a terrible game and your team will lose. This is not up for debate.
Chris Culliver showed a severe form of homophobia, made anti-gay remarks and then played a horrendous game as Joe Flacco consistently picked on him. Culliver is as much to blame for the 49ers loss as any one player.
Barret Robbins took off two days before the Super Bowl to party in Tijuana. He never returned. The Raiders subsequently got blown out by Tampa Bay.
Then there is Eugene Robinson.
The Falcons’ defensive back was popped the night before Super Bowl XXXIII for soliciting a prostitute, offering $40 to an undercover cop for a hummer.
Oh, the story gets better.
Robinson had been awarded the Bart Starr Award from Athletes in Action – a Christian group – for “high moral character” the day he went looking for relief. Not only did he break curfew, but his wife was asleep in his hotel room. High moral character indeed.
Robinson got burned by Rod Smith for an 80-yard touchdown and missed a crucial tackle on a long run by Terrell Davis, basically sucking the air out of his team. Frankly, he blew it.
The day before the biggest game of his life, he couldn’t keep his head in the game. Or in his pants. The Broncos walloped Atlanta, 34-19.
Robinson lasted two more years in the NFL (how, we want to know, did two general managers – Atlanta’s and Carolina’s – justify having Robinson on their teams when he was focused elsewhere the day before the freakin’ Super Bowl?) and played 16 overall in the NFL. He tallied 57 interceptions and was a solid player.
Yet, when telling his oral history, Robinson’s story has to begin with his crime.