When dealing with children, parents constantly say certain things over and over in order to enforce specific ideas. Lessons like “don’t touch that it’s too hot” or “look both ways before you cross the street” and “don’t pull on Santa’s beard when you sit on his lap it’s not polite” are all sentences that are repeated to those so the point is received. That’s the way it is when we’re constantly reminded sports are a business.
A fan or player who begins to hope there is some sort of loyalty to a player is treated like that toddler reaching out towards that snow-colored beard of the fake Santa who’s making $13 an hour to have kids sit on his lap. They are quickly told it’s a business, a cliche that fits for every disagreeable personnel decision. It may be the saying that is thrown around over and over, but just by the reaction of Panthers players to the Kelvin Benjamin trade, you can tell that “business” isn’t always the right answer.
Normally, players keep their emotions in check when it comes to things like this. Each and every offseason, they see players they battled alongside with on the field move elsewhere for whatever reason. It’s part of the game, but there’s still a line you don’t expect to be crossed. The kind of line that may involve your superstar wide receiver, Kelvin Benjamin.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 31, 2017
For those looking to defend the business decision that comes with moving Benjamin, you’re going to be stretching things quite a bit. Many in Carolina are claiming they didn’t want to pay the wideout once he hit free agency and believed they had an extremely similar receiver in Devin Funchess. In order to create space on the depth chart for players like Russell Shepard and rookie Curtis Samuel, moving Benjamin seemed like the right move for the future.
The only problem is, we aren’t dealing with the future right now boys and girls. We’re dealing with teammates that now have to accept this business decision in the present.
— Thomas Davis (@ThomasDavisSDTM) October 31, 2017
That’s the problem with labeling thing as “business decisions.” It goes much further than just having a player shipped away while secure draft picks in the process. Benjamin may be replaceable on the field and could eventually have been a cap issue when trying to sign him, but this isn’t the same as just moving chess pieces. There are players like Davis who clearly enjoy Benjamin as a teammate. He’s been a staple of this offense for years and now has quickly been cast aside in order to help the future.
Making a deal for the future still doesn’t stop players from hitting us with some emojis.
— Shaq Thompson (@ShaqThompson_7) October 31, 2017
— charles johnson (@randywattson) October 31, 2017
— Kawann Short (@kk_mr93) October 31, 2017
That emoji can completely sum up the decision from a player or fan’s perspective. This isn’t a team that’s tanking. They don’t need to make these business decisions now as the season is already over. News flash everyone: the Panthers are actually good at football. If the season ended today, this team would be in the postseason. They do have some tough games ahead of them including likely shootouts against teams like the Falcons, Packers, and Saints. You know what normally helps in shootouts? Not trading away your best wide receiver in the middle of a playoff hunt.
— Captain Munnerlyn (@captain_41) October 31, 2017
You can tell that the defense is clearly upset as a number of players took to Twitter to show their disapproval of this “business decision.” You get a lot of responses that make it sound like one of their friends just found out their girlfriend has been cheating on them the entire time. Of course, you can just imagine how this will affect the leader of the team and one of Benjamin’s close friends, Cam Newton.
— hypervocal (@hypervocal) November 2, 2017
That’s the difference between knowing about making a sacrifice for a business decision and just completely making a mistake. As you may have realized, Newton is a bit of a headcase. The man will call out a gender sometimes, sulk like a fourth grader who was told that he can not have McDonald’s for each and every meal after a loss, and will just straight up walk out of press conferences if he feels like it.
That’s not exactly a dude who needs his emotions messed with. Taking away his best friend and top target doesn’t exactly sound like something that will be helping this team at any point.
If you can ignore all the symbols and unnecessary marks over all of the letters, you can see the clearest response to this kind of move. It’s something that makes no sense when you think about Benjamin’s significance on and off the field.
We will always see players moved whether they’re important to the team or not. It is, of course, a business first, and the Panthers made a move they believe will help their team out in the long run. Having said that, there’s still a certain way you should do business. You don’t see successful business owners going into their place of work and fixing things that aren’t broken. That’s exactly what the Panthers did in this situation. They decided to overcorrect for a problem that had not truly surfaced, and now have to deal with the backlash from players on their team.
No situation will arise, as you’ll hear the same thing over and over. Players will just constantly use that same old phrase, “it’s a business decision.” Instead of accepting that tired cliche as something that’s acceptable, just look at the real reactions above. Trading one of your best offensive weapons isn’t a business decision. It’s just a fancy way of saying the word “mistake.”