Before yesterday's Patrtiots game against the Houston Texans, there were three reasons to appreciate the Baltimore Ravens, the team New England will host in next weekend's AFC Championship game for the right to go to this year's Superdome Super Bowl.
1. The Ravens are named after the famous poem by Baltimore's historic, iconic author Edgar Allen Poe, making them, to my knowledge, the only professional team with direct literary connections. (The owner of the Indianapolis Colts bought, and owns the original scroll of Jack Kerouac's infamous memoiristic novel On The Road, but that's still not naming your team after a poem.)
2. No player on the Ravens is part of the (Peyton/Eli) Manning family.
3. Ravens linebacker Brendan Ayanbadejo has been extremely outspoken in his support for marriage equality (see "Big-League Courage: Top names in the world of spectator sports use their voice to support gay rights and marriage equality," Valley Advocate, 4/21/11), filming several spots (see below) for Maryland Marriage Equality, and writing opinion pieces in The Huffington Post, as well.
But now, barring any miraculous last-minute trades, there appears to be only two.
Ayanbadejo, who has repeatedly shown strength of voice through his support of marraige equality, has, for some reason, stooped to the level of unnecessary trash talk via that social media outlet where immediate thoughts and feelings are oftentimes unfortunately immortalized forever, Twitter.
"New England does some suspect stuff on offense," Ayanbadejo shared via his Twitter feed as the Patriots were finishing off the Houston Texans. "Can't really respect it. Comparable to a cheap shot b4 a fight."
"You know the same organization that did spygate and cut a guy the day b4 the Super Bowl," Ayanbadejo continued.
Maybe someone hacked his feed? Maybe he just got too caught up in the moment?
Would be nice if Ayanbadejo soon returns to the kind of elevated discourse that addresses important social and political issues, which he has done admiringly, and stops whining about overused annoyances like Spygate, and unfounded criticisms regarding the type of offense that is run by the team that ended his season last year, and is favored to do so again this upcoming Sunday.
Then we can get back to appreciating the social analysis and activism of this Raven, forevermore.