by Owen James Burke
Photo: Surfing Magazine.
Marcus Mariota, a rookie quarterback for the Tennessee Titans and this year’s only unsigned first-round draft pick (2nd overall), just turned down a $20 million dollar contract because, well, he wants to surf, and the NFL franchise has included a clause in the arrangement that bars him from surfing because they believe it’s too dangerous. (I could write an endless diatribe regarding the absurdity of this matter, but I’ll spare you, and myself, from what could quite possibly end in convulsion.)
You can just imagine the soliloquy–“to sign, or not to sign…and surf”–that might have played out behind closed doors in Mariota’s bedroom before he decided to reject the Tennessee Titans’ initial offer. There are a million reasons why professional athletes refuse to sign contracts, and while I don’t have the statistics at hand, but I’d put my last surfboard down that greed can be attributed to the majority of these decisions.
Then there’s the anomaly of Marcus Mariota, an anomaly, a rogue.
Marcus Mariota, laid with his 2014 Heisman Trophy, which he earned with the Oregon Ducks. Photo: Alex Goodlett/Getty Images.