Connor Barwin Seems Like a Really Smart, Cool Dude

Photo credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports
Photo credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Connor Barwin wrote a lengthy piece on MMQB today about NFL locker room culture, which has been the subject of much discussion after the Richie Incognito-Jonathan Martin clusterfuck and Michael Sam’s coming out. An excerpt:

I am sure an MLB clubhouse has its perks, hockey players must be really fun to crush beers with, and the NBA is probably, well . . . an interesting place to work. (Can you imagine having a locker next to J.R. Swish?) But in my estimation, absolutely nothing compares to an NFL locker room. I played a lot of different sports growing up. None of them quite creates the brotherhood, the camaraderie, the fraternity that exists on a football team. Dating back to high school, two-a-day practices in 90-degree heat, lifting weights before school started, varsity jackets, all these things serve to create a bond that didn’t exist among other teams. We sacrificed together, we sweated together, we bled together. The times we had in the locker room back then were some of the greatest (albeit most juvenile) memories of my life. And to be honest, many of us haven’t grown up very much since.

What we end up with in the NFL is a room full of 65 of the most athletic, driven, and—let’s face it—reckless men in the country. Not many sane, rational individuals would voluntarily choose to play a game that threatens to take years off your life, possibly lead to CTE, and leave your joints feeling like rusty bicycle chains. What you do have, however, is one of the most diverse melting pots in the world. “Parks and Rec” has nothing on the character ensemble I work with every day. Cowboys from Texas locker next to rappers from L.A., guys blasting “Yeezus” on the stereo across from guys talking about Jesus with the chaplain, married guys with three kids next to married guys with three girlfriends.

This is a really good piece from Barwin. It’s your recommended reading for the day.


43 Responses

  1. just read it and it was an excellent read. a case can certainly be made that the atmosphere of a locker room/club house cannot and should not be subjected to the same regulations of a corporate office. anyone who has played sports is fully aware that both environments are two different worlds! while i understand the concerns and grievances that these guys have, NFL players have to realize they are partly responsible here for big brother now intruding upon their culture. last year, many black players were openly critical of riley cooper’s use of the N-word (and rightfully so.) however, when they made their case as public as they did, it was a magnet for public attention and outrage. therefore, it essentially forced the NFL to address the issue and to address the issue formally such as written print. you cant have a modus operandi of “whatever goes on in the locker room stays in the locker room” but then go public when you do not like a certain component of it. now, pandora’s box is open and you can expect many other words to be join the tsk tsk list of the 15-yard penalty.

    1. Great point. Players these days seem to reflect America as a whole right now. They just seem soft compared to the players of the olden days. You never heard all the whining and complaining you hear now. Just like how America has become a country ruled by the PC police. Where everybody claims to support freedom of speech, and everybody is so eager to express their own opinion. But the second somebody expresses an opinion they find offensive or disagree with, those same people get up in arms, seeking retribution by punishing the person who expressed that opinion

  2. “There are plenty of good guys in this league, and there are some not-so-good guys in this league. But I’m sure there are some firefighters who are a——- too.”

  3. Maybe if the NFL would discipline its players more, we could compare environments. Ray Rice knocks his fiancee unconscious but his coach says there wont be any discipline until he gets charged. But as we all know athletes literally get away with murder in this league so he will get a slap on the wrist despite video evidence of him dragging his fiancee around. Also check for steroids once in a while. They have a pretty large effect on players mental stability. But no they wont check that either because its only about making money. And the more 300+ pound players that run 4.5 40s the better. The whole “NFL locker room is different from anywhere else and we shouldnt be held to the same standards” argument is ridiculous. I dont care what you do for a living, you are still a human being. Act like one

    1. You know I would agree with you, but the level of petty bitchiness enforced by the P.C. police has gotten over-the-top ridiculous. In both the NFL as well as this country at large. When I grew up, if you called someone a “fag”, it meant they were acting like a pussy or a douche. It did not mean you were hating on them for being gay. But nowadays, you say fag, and everyone gets up in arms. And thats just one of numerous example, where people have begun to look to crucify people for the things they say, even when the context is not appropriate.

      1. I know the good old days were so much better right? When I grew up women weren’t even allowed to vote and things were perfect. I hate progress. I hate how I can’t call someone a fag. That really negatively affects my life. I mean if someone is being a douche or an asshole, I don’t want to straight up call them that. Using fag is so much cooler. Why should we be sensitive to other minorities with our speech? I just want to call people n*ggers, kikes, spics, japs, chinks, gooks, wetbacks, etc. all day. How dare all these minorities deny my rights to say that? They’re making MY life so difficult!!!

          1. It’s only censored because it wouldn’t approve my post unless I used the *. I originally typed it without the asterisk, but it said my comment wouldn’t be posted until approval. I didn’t think Kyle would get around to approving it, so I re-tried with the asterisk and it worked. Funny that n*gger was the only think it recognized as a racist term. Looks like the filter was designed by Mike Missanelli.

          2. Then Old Guy Who Grew up in the 1910s, disregard my comment if it get’s approved haha.

        1. WHen did I ever say anything about denigrating minorities? And I am talking about life five-ten years ago. Sorry if guys joking around offends you sensibilities you little pansy, but there is nothing wrong with being able to speak without having to worry that the PC police are gonna try to bring you down a peg for every little thing you say. But keep viewing everything purely black and white you whiny progressive bleeding heart pc douche.

          1. Watching your little debate from the sidelines, I’m sorry, but you’re the one coming off as humorless. I myself, have been very irritated that societal norms frown on insults I relied on from my childhood, but it recently occurred to me that it’s pretty douchy to think that this really amounts to more than the most minor of annoyances. Engage some creativity and come up with a new way to insult. And don’t bring up free speech – you’re still free to use whatever language you wish – and others are free to perceive you as the whiner you are and treat you accordingly.

  4. I guess Barwin would know considering some of the biggest scumbags in the league are in the Eagles locker room.

  5. I was very excited when the Eagles signed him, dude can ball. He is an extremely hard worker, he is great at interacting with the fans, and he seems like a great teammate. I became a huge Conner Barwin fan when I went to the Eagles vs Redskins game at the Linc. Early in the 3rd quarter, the Skins had the ball at the goal line. Barwin was not discouraged however. He did everything he could to get the crowd pumped up before the play. Then, on that very same play, he sacked RGIII, forcing a fumble, which he promptly recovered. He is definitely the type of veteran presence this young talented team needs

  6. Telling ya, football and basketball players are the biggest scum on the planet, save for football coaches that rape kids at a school where rape is all part of the normal weekend.

    1. yep, if you play football and basketball you are absolute scum. that is if you can ignore all the charity work, community outreach, fundraising, football/basketball camps, etc work that these guys and teams do. i can see two things dont get in your way; facts and the definition of the word generalization. another quality post by you, jackass!

      1. Anyone can set up a charity event, look at your buddy Sandusky.

        Anyone can act like they’re doing the right thing, does that change the fact that most of them are total scumbags?

        1. ok, so ill give you sandusky, which was a real reach for you. so, who else do you have for me in scumbag stocking of yours? ray lewis, michael vick, donte stallworth, rae carruth, etc? any other obvious guys that enable you to justly label the leagues as scum? for everyone of those scumbags, i can give you hundreds of guys who did the right thing and were good people. besides, if they are all scumbags, then why do you bother with a sports blog?

          1. kwam, great to hear from you! how you been sir? i took a sabbatical until that asshat pappagiorgio was gone. guess he is busy playing in-house rec league bball. he wanted to be on the team with red shirts this year.

          2. It’s funny you say that, he’s popped up twice in the last few weeks. I was hoping his mom took away his computer.

          3. I just hate football and basketball 😉

            Also, I’m not sure why I still come here though, it’s like my CNN. I read BBC for news, and CNN for the comments.

    2. No, the biggest scum on the planet are priests who abuse children, then hide behind the skirts of the Church for protection after the facts come out. They’re followed by lowlives who wear $1,000 dollar suits and troll all day on Wall Street, wrecking the economy with all the stealing they do. Right behind them are politicians in Washington flushing the whole country down the sewer with their endless partisan bickering when they’re not sucking the teats of lobbyists or going behind the backs of their wives with mistresses. Compared to them, athletes who behave badly are rank amateurs.

  7. Anyone listening to 975 right now? Anytime A.I. is brought up in this city (he comes back in a money grab, he might come back to the nba, he comes back to retire his jersey, etc) they love to spend THE WHOLE DAMN DAY talking about A.I. moments. What else is there left to say about the “Practice?” press conference? Like we get it, you have a deal with the Sixers but how many times are we going to beat a dead horse?? They might as well just “mail-it-in” and play tapes from the last day they spoke about A.I. all day. It never changes!!

    1. Agreed, but remember they’re trying to find a way to fill seats since no one wants to see this garbage.
      What really ticked me off was how Missanelli went off for half his show about Riley Cooper, because when he was asked about the new rule prohibiting the use of the N word, Cooper said it was a good rule. Apparently, Missanelli didn’t think he said enough and he should have given some kind of dissertation. I wish he would get suspended from 97.5 again he is so annoying!

  8. Did anyone read the Kelce and Barwin AMA on deadspin this afternoon? Loved when Kelce was asked marry-fuck-or kill, he answered Marry Merrill Reese, Fuck Howard Eskin, and Kill Mike Missanelli. I would concur.


    People – vote for me. You know it’s the right thing to do. I own that station. No way Rob Ellis should win 5 years in a row – he’s got NOTHING! I am the source of all sports knowledge in Philadelphia.


  10. .Philly has a very bad habit of celebrating players who are only good to mediocre that is why they never win anything.For instance they have been celebrating Iverson for over a decade who didn’t even win anything and they should not even got pass the bucks if it wasn’t for the refs in the eastern conference finals in 2001.Also if IVERSON was drafted 3 years earlier he would of not went no higher than 7th overall.
    Donovan mcnubb is totally overrated. So Jeffrey retired his jersey he threw up the only game he played in that mattered.he also got toked by the cardinals buccaneers and Panthers. The class of 99 qb draft is sooooo overrated and they should of took R.Williams.McNubb is a full tool box.

    1. I agree McNabb was a little overrated but really? You wouldve rather had Ricky Williams? No way. McNabb along with Reid put Eagles football back on the map. They stayed a few years too long but from 2001-2005 and then 09 it was pretty fun to be a football fan in this city thanks to them. Hes still the best QB in franchise history and I dont care how much you hate him, you cant deny that bc the numbers are there

      1. Yea I would of took Ricky then got a q.b. Later Ricky became a mental case because he slipped in the draft he thought he should’ve been top 3 and he slipped then he became a retarded the rest of his career and it ruined it. He wasn’t into football after that draft.back to mcnubb he wasn’t even a top 6 when
        he played of his era he was a product
        of an overhyped media like rush Limbaugh said. You got Brady manning warner rothelsberger Collins the other manning mcnair. McNabb came up short too many times too be considered great or even very good.I think if they took Ricky Williams they would of been more dominant offensively and Ricky would of been more valuable of a weapon offensively than mcnubb ever was and they would off won a super bowl with Williams and mcnubb would of been a bust with the bunguls.

          1. I know wip and the fanatic detuned your judgement but hear me out. The three best players coming out of that draft was Ricky Williams David Boston and champ Bailey with Ricky being the best.Ricky Williams was head and
            shoulders above mcnubb in the
            player ratings. Around the time
            of the combine mcnubb was
            supposed to be late first round
            or in the 20’s. You know that
            Reid could make anyone an half
            decent q.b. So you would of had Ricky Williams in his right mind.not his depressed dope smoking,I don’t wanna play football, helmet interview wearing mind. Ricky Williams and another q.b with Owens would of definitely won a super bowl.maybe 2 because Owens would of stayed because there is no mcnubb to start shit yea Ricky would of been a better pick in hindsight.that 99 draft just totally destroyed Ricky Williams you could tell just go back and watch it. It gave hI’m the complete mind fuck. Especially when edgerrin James got picked ahead of him

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