By Spike Eskin
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Many professional athletes have used Twitter to interact with fans, promote their products, and create a bond that would have been difficult to otherwise. Most fans would love to have a one on one conversation with an NFL player, and the social network gives them that chance. Sometimes though, it doesn’t work out so positively.
Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Jason Babin isn’t particularly busy right now, with training camp still months away. “I’m kind of bored,” Babin joked. “Not a lot going on right now, just working out.” Babin spoke to 94WIP’s Anthony Gargano and Dan Klecko on Monday. Babin sent some words of encouragement over Twitter to Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson over the weekend, and it erupted into a larger discussion with his followers.
Jackson was tagged by the Eagles as a franchise player, which means at worst, Jackson will make over nine million dollars next season if he decides to sign the tender. Babin doesn’t think that the money itself is the point entirely. “The franchise tag, first of all, it’s a lot of money, but at the same time it’s a scary proposition. You know, you could get hurt before, during the season,” he said. “I just said, hang in there. I assume he wants a long-term deal, maybe I’m wrong. It was only words of encouragement,” he told Gargano and Klecko.
Some fans on Twitter asked Babin how he could see the franchise tag as a hardship, when most won’t see that amount of money in their lifetimes. Babin reacted by shooting back at them. He suggested one person who didn’t agree “eats paste,” and linked another to an article with 13 foods that make you smarter. The entire back and forth is documented at Philadelphis sports blog Crossing Broad. He then made a joke about Brad Pitt receiving a franchise tag from Paramount Studios (or “Studio’s” as he wrote).
Calling Eagles fans stupid doesn’t seem to be most effective way of winning them over, but Babin doesn’t see it as all that big a deal. “I think it’s fun, get in a little battle, a a little discussion. I’ve got no hard feelings at the end of the day. I go to bed not worrying about it. I guess some people take it pretty seriously,” he said. “I’m 99% sarcastic.”
Listen to the entire interview with Jason Babin:http://nyc.podcast.play.it/media/d0/d0/d1/d0/d0/d4/dV/1004V_3.MP3?authtok=5561712411262128701_9L7aS3vXzMlfGFftr4xv4lyT1BM