Jets' Scott isn't the bad guy here

BY Peter Schrager • September 21, 2012

New York Jets linebacker Bart Scott has been called everything from a media whore to a phony. He likes the bright lights of the camera, loves giving a quote, and is the first to capitalize on something like his "Can't wait!" proclamation two years ago after an upset win over the Patriots in the playoffs (Scott promptly trademarked the slogan after the game).

Well, the media whore got out-whored on Friday afternoon. In what’s been described as a "bizarre scene" byThe New York Post, Scott had to be separated from a blogger in the locker room during an altercation after Friday’s practice. As the story’s been reported by multiple eyewitnesses, the blogger — a writer whose publication is called Jets Confidential — attempted to take cell phone pictures of Scott while the Jets linebacker was roaming the locker room.

When Scott told the blogger — a grown man, snapping cell phone photos of another grown man against his will — to stop, the blogger resisted Scott's pleas and continued right on.

Scott reportedly, then, told the blogger to, "Get a life," but the man didn’t back down. When Scott threatened to punch him, the blogger responded, “Yeah, and I’ll sue!”

The two were eventually separated by members of the Jets PR staff.

The New York media is piling on Scott for the incident on Friday afternoon. He's gotten it bad. After declaring a “media mutiny” earlier this season for the way his team was treated by the local press corps this summer, he’s not exactly the scribes’ most beloved character. Though I have many problems with an athlete — anyone, really — threatening to punch someone else in the face, I also think there needs to be some accountability taken by the blogger.

Bart Scott had every right to be mad.

The cover of the latest Jets Confidential magazine features Scott, dressed in plain clothes with a menacing expression, with the headline: “Ringleader: Bart’s friend who started the foolish circus talk." Other “highlights” of the “issue” include: “Bursting at the seams with inside info on Gang Green. This issue has an astounding eight pages of Jets whispers.”

No names to sources. None of that. Who needs ‘em when you’ve got whispers, baby?

The blogger then, almost immediately after the incident went down, hit the sports talk radio circuit. He was on Mike Francesa’s radio show on WFAN, then quickly hopped on over to SiriusXM to tell his side of the story with its NFL station hosts. It was no longer about the Jets and Dolphins, but Bart Scott and the blogger. He was no longer a reporter covering a team — but THE story.

It’s a dog-eat-dog media world. I get it. With newspapers folding and more and more news breaking on Twitter, journalists are forced to scrap, hustle and grind to gather news. But should a reporter/blogger ever actively work to become not only a part of, but the entire story?

The blogger was snapping photos of Scott at his locker. Scott told him to stop. He didn’t. And then he went on the radio circuit, advertising his publication and puffing his chest on a media tour.

Scott's the "bad" guy here?

I don’t know the blogger on a personal level. I’m not all that familiar with his work.

But the Jets have enough problems. The last thing they need is player-on-media violence.

Alas, it sounds like that’s exactly what this guy was hoping for.

The "media whore" got played by an even bigger one — and no one's any better off.