13 August 2012
Chad "Ochocinco" Johnson or whatever his name is this week, finds himself on the wrong end of a choice once again. I'm not going to address the allegations specifically because one, all the facts are not out and two, they are irrelevant to my point. My point being that once again Ochocinco makes a choice that costs him the same price, finding himself on the unemployment line.
He has made this choice time and time and time again over his NFL career. The choice to say the wrong thing. The choice to do the wrong thing. The choice to put celebrity ahead of his job. The choice to put himself above the team. The choice to not learn the playbook. The choice to not perform on and off the field the way his coach (and by proxy his employer) expects him to. In making these choices time and time again, he finds that the price doesn't change and neither does he. Therefore, he repeats the same choice, pays the same price and never learns to make a different choice.
Of course, he will say it's not his fault. That it is someone else's fault that he now finds himself with a habit. He will say that someone else's actions compelled him to make whatever choice he made. By not taking responsibility for his own choices, he is doomed to repeat them and repeat them he does. Habit then becomes character. After this much repetition, these kinds of choices are who he is and anyone looking to offer him another job needs to realize that this is what they are going to get. He will not miraculously become a different choice maker if he is given XYZ job.
Can he make different choices? Of course he can, he's not dead. As long as he's still living, he can make different choices. He can choose the direction of his life. He can make choices that take him towards a different outcome and a far different price. The question is not can he make different choices, it is of course will he make different choices and not one person on this planet knows that answer except Chad Johnson. Anything else is just speculation.
I think even at 34 he can still be a very good football player. I think he can offer some team out there a viable wide receiver option. I think that he also does a lot of good things off the field. He is constantly doing things for the fans. He can also be very uplifting at times online. He has his detractors, millions of them, but he's not a completely bad guy at the core. But that hasn't compelled him to make different choices.
He went to the Patriots and made choices that caused him not to play and then found him out of a job. He went to the Dolphins and has made choice after choice that then forced the Dolphins to release him. Will this be the thing that compels him to make a different choice? I don't know that answer and neither do you. Only Chad Johnson knows what choices he will make and only he can decide if he wants to continue this habit or form a new one. Time will show the answer as it always does and time will show the facts of his latest news headline. So what's it going to be whatever your name is?
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