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The Happiest and Saddest Players in the NFL

Though it’s early in the season, the saddest player in the NFL just might be No. 89 for the Green Bay Packers. Jared Cook signed a modest one-year contract with the Packers, confident he’d put up numbers that would get him a big multi-year deal – here or elsewhere – in 2017.

After playing with a series of below-average quarterbacks, he fully expected that teaming up with superstar Aaron Rodgers would result in a breakout year. Even more promising, coach Mike McCarthy was preaching about the great opportunities in the modern NFL to exploit the middle of the field – all that was needed was a big, strong, fast receiver. A Super Bowl ring seemed a real possibility.

Two games in, Cook is averaging 2.5 catches and 19 yards receiving per game. Despite all the excitement, generated in part by Cook’s impressive preseason showing, Aaron Rodgers has barely looked his way. The powerful passing attack that he thought he was joining is ranked 31st in the league. Though he freed himself from Rams quarterback Case Keenum, if Cook were still with the Rams at least he’d be living in Los Angeles and hanging out in Malibu or running into actresses and models at L.A.s latest hot spots. Then there’s the excitement that Los Angeles is feeling over the Rams – its first NFL team since the Rams and Raiders both left in 1995.

Instead, Jared’s dreams are hanging by the flimsiest of threads. How could he not be bummed?

The happiest player in the NFL has got to be a guy who was in the last year of his contract, who had been told by his team there would be no contract renewal talks during the season, and who in any event was not likely to be offered more than his current five-year $33 million deal. Josh Sitton was 30 years old, unappreciated by his current team’s management, and with a very uncertain future. Then, on the roster cutdown day, the Packers humiliatingly dumped their All Pro guard. He deserved better.

Two days later, the skies brightened. The Chicago Bears showed their appreciation of the blue-collar journeyman in the best possible way: by signing Sitton to a magnificent new, and better, contract worth $21.75 over three years.

On Monday night, when the Bears’ offensive unit was introduced, there was Sitton in the blue and red, with a big smile on his face. Who can blame him?

Rob Born

Smart drafters don’t select the best available players, they fill a team’s positions of greatest need.



  1. PF4L September 22, 2016

    So, is living in L.A. and possibly running into an actress or model in Malibu now the pinnacle of life in making someone happy? Based on the fact the Rams released him, and no team, other than Green Bay showed any real interest, Cook should be happy, because he could very well, be watching games on his couch if it wasn’t for the Packers.

    Concerning Sitton. He got a job, he got a contract that the bears could break after the season. That doesn’t mean he’s automatically happy. He’s with the Bears. I’d bet if he could undo everything, he’d be happier being back in Green Bay. I highly doubt the bears were on Sittons list of teams he’d be happy to play for.

    I bet Mark Murphy is happy, happy he doesn’t feel like his job duties include anything to do with the Packers performance, or bears any kind of responsibility of the Packers upper management being accountable. Don’t believe that? Just ask him. He’s to busy overseeing the development across the street. Right now all his time is being consumed by how much greenery to plant around the new buildings.

    Ted Thompson is also very happy, very happy that he can hide in his office and not expose himself to anything foolish like…you know, answering questions about the Green Bay Packers. At least not until the end of the season.

    Some people that i know aren’t happy, are Packer fans, and no, i don’t consider Murphy and Thompson Packer fans.

  2. Carlos Goodman September 25, 2016

    Nailed it. Josh Sitton is the happiest player in the NFL.