We don’t hear a lot about hazing in the NFL, and when we do, it’s typically about rookies having to carry the balls, or wear goofy costumes. So when New York Giants punter Steve Weatherford tweeted a video of All-Pro defensive lineman Jason Pierre-Paul carrying second-year cornerback Prince Amukamara through the locker room and then throwing him into an ice bath, it was somewhat shocking. One player is yelling, “You got to stand up for yourself.” After tossing the corner in the water, Pierre-Paul says, “He didn’t do shit, neither,” while giving high-fives.
Amukamara doesn’t say anything, but (SHOCKINGLY) he doesn’t look to be enjoying himself.
Giants coach Tom Coughlin responded in typically icy (pardon the pun) fashion.
“I’m going to look into it, I’m going to talk to the parties involved,” Coughlin said on Monday. “As I’m understanding it, there were some parts of it that were inappropriate. And in no way, anything that occurs within this family or within our group should be a part of social media. I’m going to address that strongly because I spent a little time on that this preseason.”
Following the coach’s remarks, Weatherford deleted the video and tweeted the following:
For his part Amukamara had this to say about the incident.
“Sometimes I think they take it overboard just because they’re vets they get to be mean about it and tell you what to do,” Amukamara said. “I just kind of flipped the whole script and kind of had fun with it with being insubordinate a little bit — just so it can be more playful and I think that that whole vibe just creates a great locker room atmosphere.”
It’s a diplomatic response from someone who’s been publicly embarrassed by his teammates, but a smart one. It’s best not to play the victim to a bunch of guys who you have to build a relationship with if you want to keep your job.
But the thing about this story that I can’t get over is Steve Weatherford as documentarian and participant. Steve, you’re a punter. You don’t hit anyone. I know you have a reputation for cursing and being a tattooed hard-ass, but here you come off like the guy who stands behind the bully and yells “YOU TELL ‘EM JASON!” right before he punches some kid. Nobody likes that guy.