Is Lane Johnson playing tonight?

No, he’s out. He did not participate in Wednesday’s team walkthrough and has missed the last two games due to a personal matter that Nick Sirianni politely has declined to discuss.

It’s an issue that sources described to us as “complicated,” and it trends into a taboo family/medical territory. That’s why nobody has reported the details, because it’s personal. It’s the kind of thing where the reporter would probably get hammered in the public sphere if they did go ahead and divulge what’s going on.

Is it frustrating? YEAH it’s frustrating. It’s frustrating for fans, and also for reporters, because the honest truth is that no beat writer ever wants to withhold information. Nobody is sitting there saying, “I know what’s going on but I’m not going to tell you.” There’s zero tangible benefit there and nobody does it. It’s a myth.*

Think about it. We live in a day and age where every Twitter dipshit is an expert with an itchy trigger finger. Some of the sloppiest “reporting” crosses the feed daily, from blue checkmarks who are trying to make a name for themselves. Rarely is anything ever withheld, and we’re living in a time where more information than ever is made public. More information is typically better than less information.

But sometimes you get into personal/medical/family areas, and privacy is requested and granted. Does that mean that the writers are “sitting” on the story? Yeah, technically it does, but nobody wants to sit on it. The Eagles beat is so cutthroat and competitive and all of those guys are always looking for scoops. They’re looking for a leg up wherever they can find it. People like Jeff McLane aren’t just sitting on something to sit on it. We’re talking experienced pros in a major market who regularly do quality deep dives.

The real question is this:

Do fans deserve to know? Does a football player making millions of dollars qualify as the type of figure for whom we’d cross the line to provide information deemed necessary for the public?

This guy thinks so:

I don’t agree with this line of thinking because Lane Johnson is a football player. He’s not the President. He’s not the Secretary General of the United Nations. Nothing involving him is of any true pertinence to any of us. It’s not a security issue. It’s not a financial disclosure. He plays a sport, and the thing keeping him out is not related to the sport.

But aren’t fans paying customers? Don’t they deserve to know what’s going on?

Yeah, that’s true, but only to an extent. We all deserve to know if a guy is injured, and players have to speak to the media, and all of that. Likewise, we spend tons of money at the grocery store every year, so do we deserve to be in the loop? Maybe we deserve to know when the banana shipment is coming in, but we don’t have a right to know about the fruit handler’s personal medical history, because it’s personal and it doesn’t affect us. We pay taxes that go to our kids’ teachers, but if Mrs. (last name) is out for “personal reasons,” then do we need to know what that entails? No, we don’t.

We have to throw Lane Johnson a bone here. Support a guy who helped bring this team a Super Bowl. When he comes back, maybe he’ll talk about what happened.


*I’ve been told that Howard Eskin did indeed do this on the radio. What a DOPE.