Yesterday afternoon Clinton Portis officially retired from the National FootballLeague. Since Portis had been of the league for over a year his retirement was of no surprise to anyone yet it was still a somber occasion.
When it was announced on Wednesday that Portis would be announcing his retirement at Redskins Park I felt that there should be a cause for celebration. Sure Portis had his faults but for the past twenty years of losing and mediocrity no other player in burgundy and gold had thumped his chest more with pride in being a Washington Redskin.
Of course if you were listening to former Redskin linebacker LaVar Arrington on his afternoon talk radio show you would have thought Portis to be a bum. LaVar and his sheeple callers seem to rag on Portis and if anyone praised the man LaVar would offer up some conjecture. It’s no secret that LaVar doesn’t like Portis (and vice versa) but there are times when you have to put personnel feelings aside and give a man his due.
I had not realized that a lot of fans felt this way about Portis. Sure this shtick would get annoying from time to time. His multiple personalties or his YouTube videos him and tightend Chris Cooley would make, but Portis was just having some fun while playing a game we all watch for entertainment.
Portis ran for 6,824 yards with 46 touchdowns as a Redskins and is only second to the immortal John Riggins in franchise history. There are so many running back in Redskins history that we look back on with fondness and only Riggo can say he was better than Portis. And even with Riggins’ size he still wasn’t half the blocker Portis was. In an era where most running backs consider a block to be just shoving a blitzing linebacker, Portis summoned his inner Russ Grimm and would drill anyone who came his way. (more…)