Jason Whitlock: ‘The worst teammate in all of sports is coming to the Hall of Fame’

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Mark Schlereth and Tony Gonzalez join Colin Cowherd and Jason Whitlock to discuss the 2018 NFL Hall of Fame class

- Whitlock, are you reading anything into T.O. skipping the Hall of Fame activities?

- Yes, I am. That they're about to realize their worst nightmare-- the worst teammate in all of sports is coming to the Hall of Fame. And he's already off to a bad start, in my view. Now yeah, maybe he has some explanation, and there is some justifiable reason he wasn't there. I reached out to T.O. over Twitter-- we follow each other-- over a DM and asked him, why weren't you at any of-- the Super Bowl or any of the events. "None of your business. Again, kick rocks! Don't concern yourself too much about me. Keep kissing ass over there." That was T.O.'s response.

- He told you [INAUDIBLE]

- And so he's telling me to kick rocks. To me, he's telling his Hall of Fame class inductees kick rocks too. Again, he left on Saturday to come back here to be in some Chris Paul bowler's charity event. But once you get the call on Saturday, there's a private jet that will take you to Minneapolis so you can be at the Super Bowl and be with your class of inductees and start participating in things with your class. It's like pledging a fraternity. These are your line brothers. And he hasn't been a part of it. I think this is a sign he's going to continue to walk to the beat of his own drum, and this-- this won't be pretty.

- Well, I mean, he has the worst quality, for me, of anybody-- neediness. I don't have needy friends. I don't like being around needy people. He's a needy guy. He's the opposite of Larry Fitzgerald. You know, I mean, he just constantly needs attention and approval. Not my kind of guy. That said, when you voted him in, you knew that. He's always been--

- What if he snubs the Hall of Fame ceremony?

- Well, you know what? By the way-- I know you get mad when I say this, and I compare the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame to the Players' Hall of Fame-- but players-- Paul McCartney and others missed the Hall of Fame rock and roll induction. They're rock and roll stars. He's a rock and roll star. He is a diva, needy, high-maintenance wide receiver who was really productive. Don't expect him to be a left guard.

- It's not a brotherhood at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The NFL Hall of Fame is a brotherhood.


- Talk to the Hall of Famers.

- I got news for you. Those rock and rollers all trashed hotel rooms. It's a little bit of a brotherhood. They all drank too much and partied too hard.

- I would say this-- you know, obviously it's disappointing. He had a commitment. Maybe he thought he wasn't going to get in. I don't know what goes through his mind. But here's the issue-- if what you're trying to do is get back to the voters because you weren't a first ballot Hall of Famer-- There has been two-- Randy Moss and Jerry Rice at the receiver position. They were first ballots. You're-- you're not in that same-- Like, you're a Hall of Famer, but you ain't Jerry Rice or Randy Moss. So I would say this-- and he was a great player, don't get me wrong. He's a great player. But the bottom line is if you're trying to get back at the Hall of Fame voters, you're missing the point. The point is, is that you-- you have reached rarefied air, man. You're with a group of men that laid the path before you, that made sacrifices that you don't even know about.

JASON WHITLOCK: So you can make--

- That's-- that's--

JASON WHITLOCK: -- all that money.

- That's the issue is that-- I get around-- I had the great privilege of meeting one of my childhood heroes, Rocky Bleier, this weekend in Minneapolis. And you know what? I was one, nervous. Two, I just went to Rocky and said, I just want to thank you for laying the groundwork that allowed me to play this game. And watching you as a kid growing up made me want to be a football player. That's why I'm a football player because I follow the Pittsburgh Steelers.

So the reverence I have for those guys and the reverence you should have for those guys that you're in the Hall of Fame with-- I'm never getting in the Hall of Fame unless I buy a ticket. And I'm OK with that because I wasn't good enough. But doggone it, those guys sacrificed so that I could live out a childhood dream. And that's what you're missing. You want to get back at the voters because you don't like them. What you're doing is you're just hurting the guys that-- that created-- that are-- are the reason you're there.

- Yeah, but you've got to remember, football teams are made up of a-- a series of different people. Gronk can be kind of a meathead, and Brady's obsessed. And then they have a wide receiver that's funny. Your view of the world isn't TO's. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-- Even within a family--

- Would you stop?

- Even within a family--

- Stop!

- --Personalities are different. You guys all want T.O. to be Larry Fitzgerald.

- And that's-- that's going to be my point on this. I mean, come on. You guys knew-- you know who T.O. is. You know what type of personality he is. He's going to tell you to kick rocks. You're going to reach out to him and try to offer an olive branch-- which is what you were probably trying to do the previous text before this one DM.

JASON WHITLOCK: Told him to be a good teammate.

- Yeah, whatever. He-- he doesn't care. He doesn't want to hear that from you. He got in, he feels jaded now. He's going to be-- that's going to be T.O. This is who he is.

- Why is it OK in the NBA to have flaky Wilt, needy-- gregarious Magic, Kawhi Leonard doesn't talk, and we're OK with it. But all football players have to be the exact same guy.

- No they don't have to be the exact same guy. We're talking about for people that played football and love it, this-- getting into the Pro Football Hall of Fame is like heaven on earth.

COLIN COWHERD: He doesn't love it, he likes it.

- I get-- no, he like what it could do for him. He clearly doesn't love football.

COLIN COWHERD: That's OK, too.

- But again, when-- when you get a chance to join the greatest of the greats of football players, your reverence for them and the reverence for the guys you're going in with should be so overwhelming that whatever bitterness you have towards the voters--

TONY GONZALEZ: Why? Why are you--

- --Should go away.

- Why are you speaking logically?

COLIN COWHERD: He's not logical.

- You're speaking realistically right now. It makes no--

- You're asking him to be you.


COLIN COWHERD: He doesn't love the game, he likes it.

- There's 200 or 300 other guys in-- in the Hall of Fame. When Lawrence Taylor got in-- Ray Lewis is one of the greatest players of all time. He's damn near in tears because he gets to join Jim Brown and these people.

TONY GONZALEZ: Yeah, but T.O.'s different. This is who he is. This is who he was when he was on the field. Why-- Why would he change now? He said, get your popcorn ready. Come on, this is who he is.

- Here it is-- where common sense isn't always so common. And you know what? You just got to live with it.

- And look, I hope that he has some legitimate excuse that--

- Yeah, maybe.

- --Why he wasn't there. But anybody else, you stop what you're doing and like, I got to get to Minneapolis and be with my guys.

- Even if he has a legitimate excuse, I think it'll be like Belichick-- ain't none of your business.

- Well that's what he told me.

- Truth.

- Kick rocks. Truth.