WASHINGTON, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- So let me understand this: We're supposed to chalk up the comments of Jeremy Shockey to his being young and immature? I don't think so.
For those of you who have been out of touch recently or don't know who Shockey is, a refresher.
"I'll make him pay when we play them, the homo," Shockey said. He claimed the comments were taken out of context.
Where have I heard that before? If that was the case, then why was it necessary to make an apology Sunday.
"I want to apologize to my family, my teammates and the Giants organization," Shockey said. "I did not intend to disrespect anyone, but I understand that is exactly what I have done with several of my recent comments in the stuff that has come out and continues to come out. Several of my comments have been thoughtless, immature and made with a total disregard for those around me and for any possible consequences. I understand that some of my comments have been irresponsible."
Smith claims he has the interview on tape. That is the main reason I tend to believe him. A good reporter carries a recorder everywhere for important interviews or news conferences to make sure he gets any and all comments on tape and doesn't have to paraphrase.
After a preseason game on Saturday, when asked, Shockey said he would have nothing to say about comments he claimed he did not make. Sunday, after a meeting with Coach Jim Fassel, he apologized, sort of, but not to Parcells.
Funny how you have to apologize for a comment you didn't make.
I've heard that Shockey should be given the benefit of the doubt for the comments he makes because he's 22 and doesn't understand what it means to be politically correct; that he needs to be more selective when it comes to expressing himself.
Well as far as I'm concerned, that's a crock.
First of all, this was not the first time he said something idiotic. He made headlines as a rookie last year for his insensitive comments about gays on Howard Stern's radio show.
Shockey was angered by Parcells' comment after a preseason game last summer. He bowled over several would-be tacklers on a pass play and reporters, commentators, analysts, everybody it seems, were raving.
About what? It was one play in a meaningless contest at the Hall of Fame game and the players he ran over likely are long gone. Parcells would say later that he had never seen a player get so much publicity for one play in a preseason game.
I've never been a great Parcells fan, but he has coached two Super Bowl winners and when he says something like that, it is not to be taken lightly.
"I mean, he played one quarter of an exhibition. What has he done yet?" Parcells asked on the set of ESPN, where he used to be an analyst.
My sentiments exactly. Until Shockey can be realistically compared to some of the best tight ends who ever played the game - guys like John Mackey, Wesley Walls and Mark Bavaro, a former Giant himself - then we can talk about how great Shockey is. And we won't be comparing who made the most outlandish, stupid, insensitive comments because when you're a pro, you don't make them. You let numbers and consistent performance do the talking.
One game, one season, and having a big mouth won't do it. And contrary to what people say, he does not need sensitivity training. He needs to grow up.