So you’ve made it. You’re an NFL scout! Congratulations: You have one of the coolest jobs on the planet. So what if you have a few minor limitations, like racism, anti-Semitism, and a tendency to brush aside stuff like domestic violence? It’s your ability to spot talent that matters.
If you doubt that, just think back to the 2017 draft, when a lot of you scouts advised your general managers not to draft quarterback Deshaun Watson before Mitchell Trubisky. Trubisky is white, Watson is black, and, well, you just had your doubts. But now that Deshaun Watson is looking like a generational player while Mitchell Trubisky, to put it mildly, does not, you’ve learned your lesson, right? Apparently not, because you went ahead and made the same mistake again this year while scouting Lamar Jackson, who is black, and deciding that he’d be better off playing wide receiver, because he’s fast and speaks with a country twang. So you let Jackson tumble all the way down to the very end of round one in the 2018 draft, where the Ravens got one heck of a deal, drafting Jackson thirty-second overall.
Now, look: I’m not blaming you entirely here, because certain ethnicities or religions are less frequently drafted to certain positions on pro football teams. Like, say, Jewish quarterbacks. Have you ever met a Jew? It’s likely that you haven’t, and you might’ve even heard—maybe even believed—a few nasty stereotypes about them. But be careful! You don’t want to seem overly anti-Semitic. So, here’s a quick guide for how to be quietly anti-Semitic while scouting Jewish talent.
Take UCLA’s Jewish (well, half Jewish) quarterback Josh Rosen, for example.
You want to say, “Jews creep me out, I don’t know why. They just do.”
Don’t say that. You’ll be in more trouble than Marge Schott at a Nazi memorabilia auction. Try this instead:
“I don’t know… There was something about him that bothered me,” said Alonzo Highsmith, VP Player Personnel, Cleveland Browns.
Alonzo must have had a good reason for the above, right? Just listen to his story: “I was at an airport,” he recalled. “UCLA’s volleyball team was in front of me. You heard so much about Rosen. We all know how people talk… So I asked one of the coaches, ‘What’s Rosen like?’ ‘You should probably ask his girlfriend, she’s one of the players. She’s over there.’”
“Good enough,” said the Browns exec, who didn’t bother to ask Rosen’s girlfriend anything.
See? Alonzo got his message across and he didn’t get in trouble. Jews bother him but he didn’t say it directly so it’s cool!
You want to call local sports talk radio and scream a stereotype as old as the bible itself: “Josh Rosen is a greedy Jew!”
Do not do that. You’ll be shunned faster than Donald Sterling at a screening of Black Panther.
Instead, try this, like the many brave and brilliant anonymous sources in your scouting community: Point out the fact that Josh Rosen’s family has money. So, you know, he doesn’t need football. Forget the fact that in an attempt to defend himself, Rosen has said: “Okay, my family isn’t like, stupid wealthy. But I’m coming from a place where if football doesn’t work out, I don’t have to work at McDonald’s.” Also, ignore the widely underreported story of when Rosen was a high school quarterback, upon learning that some of his teammates couldn’t afford to pay $1500 for a road game in Hawaii, Rosen spent his summer selling coupons for local businesses door-to-door and raised enough cash to fund the trip for all of them, not even telling his teammates about it until it was done. Just make it clear, without putting your name on record calling him “greedy” that Rosen’s family having money means he doesn’t need football.
You want to say, “Jews are weak mommas’ boys with allergies like Larry David or Woody Allen! A Jew would snap in half if he got hit!”
Do not say that. You’ll look like Hitler at the 1936 Olympics. Plus, you’ll catch hell on Twitter, instead, try scouting Rosen’s durability like this: “The physical part of it, is he going to be able to take hits?” said Charlie Casserly, former Redskins General Manager and NFL Network analyst.
Or like this: “The durability, that to me is the biggest concern,” said Daniel Jeremiah, former Baltimore Ravens scout and NFL Network analyst.
See? The above reads way better and it’ll keep the Jewish NFL owners from blacklisting you if you get fired for passing on Josh Rosen after he plays well for another team.
You want to say, “Jews? Aren’t they just book-reading intellectuals? I don’t want some literate bookworm running my offense!”
Careful! You’ll come off like Dan Snyder doing, well, just about anything. Plus, you’ll hear from the ACLU for sure, you will get fired and probably end up working for some Jewish business owner at a car dealership.
Instead, be more like Rosen’s college coach, Jim Mora. Mora went on record to say the Browns would be better off drafting a different quarterback because Rosen “needs to be challenged intellectually so he doesn’t get bored.”
Listen, you can be anti-Semitic, just don’t be overt about it. After all, you’re an NFL scout, it’s a great job, and you don’t want to lose it. There are a bunch of Jewish owners in the NFL, and they’ll hate it if you are directly anti-Semitic.
So remember: Next time a guy like Josh Rosen comes along, just say you can’t put your finger on it. Say something just feels off. And give a little credit to the Arizona scouting staff: They got a heck of a quarterback in Rosen, tenth overall in the 2018 NFL draft. Thanks to you they got a great Jewish quarterback. At a discount.