Top 10 things to do before entering a NFL locker room.

6 11 2008

by John Schlupf

The Top 10 things to do before entering a NFL locker room.

Number 10: Watch the movie Airplane. Joey, “you ever seen a grown man naked”? NFL players are big. Towels are small. Put a belt around your torso next time you come out of the shower. Look in the mirror. That’s what you are going to see.

Number 9: Practice nodding. Are you really going to disagree with what an NFL player says as he stands before you? “Umm, sorry Antonio, you didn’t block him at all, he pancaked you”. Yea, right.

Number 8: Keep in mind it is not your house. Even a beautifully carpeted state-of-the-art locker room can look like Pigpen’s bedroom in a manner of a few short minutes. Be prepared to step over and ignore dirty, sweaty socks, jock straps, tee shirts, doo rags, bandanas, and anything Under Armor.

Number 7: Make some notes. As you approach a player, there is a good chance you’ll sense an onslaught of severe panic attack symptoms. It will be similar to what you felt before talking to the head cheerleader in high school, or when you had to ask someone you had never spoken to, to the senior prom. If you try to wing it, there’s a good chance you’ll mumble and bumble your way into an extremely embarrassing situation.

Number 6: Review the game stats. You: “Drew, you sure lit up that Patriots defense”. Him: “Dude, I was inactive”. After that, you might as well toss your locker room pass in the garbage and head home.

Number 5: Don’t act like a fan. It isn’t appropriate to chastise Torry Holt, for example, because he only produced 2 points for your fantasy football team.

Number 4: Consider talking to the kickers first and last. For the most part, kickers are a polite and forgiving bunch. Josh Brown of the St. Louis Rams is one of the most respectful, down-to-earth guys you’ll ever find. I won’t name names (Anthony Becht), but Tight End’s can be the most demeaning and condescending. No wonder Jet fans booed when they selected a certain player out of West Virginia in the first round of the 2000 draft.

Number 3: Check your opinion at the door. Your motto should be “just the facts, ma’am”, sans the ma’am. Look at the sheer numbers and decide. Which side would you choose? Fifty plus NFL players, or a handful of scribes?

Number 2: Leave your camera somewhere else. Yes, it’s very cool to be there. Yes, you want to be able to show your friends what it’s like. No, you don’t want to be caught near a flash when 6’ 8”, 325 lb. Orlando Pace strolls by.

And the number one thing to do before entering a NFL locker room is… Brush up on three-card Monte. Let’s get real here folks and change the tone of this situation. Stop being a wuss and think about when the next chance you’re going to have to be in the company of so many stubborn, wealthy Generation Y cohorts. You can bankroll a trip to Hawaii with a few simple slights of hand.

In the NFL, preparation is the key to success. The same goes for your trip into club jockstrap. Like everyone always says, act like you’ve been there before. Even if you still take a shower with swim trunks on.

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