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27 reasons to like David Macklin

You'll forgive a quick fluff piece on new Redskins cornerback David Macklin, as we're short on news today (and I'm tired of commenting on other people's previews, though Bucky Brooks produced a good article and deserves credit for that). So please direct your attention briefly to this article on David Macklin and his 27 Reasons Football Camp. I'll quote the Redskins relevant portions of the article, which are mostly David Macklin quotes, just so you can learn to love this guy for the upcoming season:

"I love to see kids smile," the eight year veteran [Macklin] said. "I love for them to have alternatives other than going to the corner or doing things that are negative. Our organization wants to give kids a chance to see and talk to NFL football players. We want them to know that every year they have something to look forward to meeting different players."...

"We have a 27-cities campaign to go out to different events whether it's charity events with Boys and Girls clubs or Christmas events. We just want to help disadvantaged kids by pouring love into their lives and hopefully they can receive it. We've had events in Washington D.C, Indianapolis, and Atlanta.

Sporting a Washington Redskins cap, the former Menchville High School star signed a contract this year to play for the team he grew up rooting for. "They were the only team for me," he said about his love for the Redskins as a youngster. "I got to watch a lot of great guys like Darrell Green, Ark Monk, and Dexter Manley. Seeing those guys set the tone for me as an athlete, especially on the football field. To be able to walk in those doors and to be able to say I'm a Washington Redskin now is a blessing."...

"We had a Grade Point Average session," Macklin said. "I [sic] lot of kids don't understand that you cant get on the field unless you get your academics straight. I want to help them in the classroom and on the field. If you don't listen, and you aren't coachable then you are not going to be good to any coach whether it's on the high school, college or professional level."

He added, "You have to be coachable, and be able to work with others. Those are life skills. You have to be humble enough to take what someone is saying to you, not as something to hurt you, but to help you. These kids can really tell that we care about them, and that they can make it in anything; not just football, but in life."

Though I like that it's about more than just football, I'm a bit shocked that there exist kids today that are competing athletically yet aren't clear on minimum academic requirements. That's not a knock against those kids, as I don't expect them to simply intuit the rules out of thin air, but rather against educators, parents, etc. that are not making things explicit. I've never felt that academic eligibility was an especially abstract concept, although I presume it's a lot more difficult to digest if you have to learn it from David Macklin in the midst of a Football Camp rather than at home or in a classroom or from Coach. But enormous credit to Macklin for taking the initiative and righting a wrong.

I was also pleasently surprised by the accessibility of his 27 Reasons website. All the information I'd need about donations, how Macklin is involved (he's a Chairmen and the CEO), how to contact them, and anything else I could conceivably want to know is readily available.

That said, one thing did jump out at me. If you click on their "About" section and read the "Mission" heading, you'll find no fewer than four Trademarked phrases that I'll quickly forget from my Lexicon lest I subject myself to legal action. For my reader(s) judicial safety only do I list these phrases, and by no means is this meant as a challenge to the Trademark, which I would credit properly except I don't know how to make the neat little TM or circled R with this confangled keyboard. Anyways:

  1. to build dreams one-heart-at-a-time (TM)
  2. Reason Kids (TM)
  3. Reason Teenagers (TM)
  4. It's a New Day! New Season! Your Reason for Believing (TM)
So those are off limits now. Go read the piece on Macklin if only to familiarize yourself with one of our players, and also because he sounds like a genuinely nice guy who sincerely cares about the community, which hopefully will one day be the rule rather than the exception in the NFL.

David Macklin is expected to fill the role that Mike Rumph didn't, namely 4th string cornerback (behind Shawn Springs, Carlos Rogers, and Fred Smoot) and then 3rd string when Springs is injured. A quick look at their respective statistics shows virtually no comparison. Macklin has 14 career interceptions to Rumph's 3. Mike has 14 passes defensed over his career, David Macklin had 15 in 2005 alone. Mike Rumph has started 19 games in his career, Macklin started 21 in just the past two years.

We're better off at that position than we were a year ago.