As a person who is roughly the same age as Tennessee Titans quarterback Vince Young, I can't even imagine what it would be like to step out onto a football field in front of 70,000 screaming, psychotic fans -- and millions more in front of their TV's -- on an NFL Sunday and attempt to play football. Or do anything, for that matter. Honestly, I'd probably wet myself and fall into the fetal position before I even lined up for the first snap.
Some people, however, live for that sort of thing. They thrive on it and elevate their games to an entirely new level. And it's starting to become obvious that Young may not be one of those players.
Jim Wyatt of the Nashville Tennessean has documented the roller-coaster ride that has been Vince Young over the previous 48 hours and points out some rather incredible, and concerning, pieces of information.
As Wyatt reports, a psychologist met with Young at his home on Monday afternoon, before he went missing later in the night, sparking a search from Nashville police.
The Titans had concerns about Young even before late Monday night.What makes the entire situation bizarre, is the fact that after the initial reports surfaced that Young went missing and the Titans were concerned, everything was eventually brushed off as a misunderstanding and everything was back to normal. Now, it seems that not only is Young's future with the Titans uncertain, his future as an NFL quarterback may be uncertain.
After Young balked at having the MRI on Monday, Fisher went out and talked to him at his Brentwood home, spending over an hour with him. The Titans also sent a psychologist, Dr. Sheila Peters, and Tina Tuggle, the team's Director of Player Development, to meet with Young to try and encourage him.
The psychologist said Young was extremely depressed and expressed concerns to the team about Young's safety. Later, Young left the house and sped off in his Mercedes Benz without his cell phone. He couldn't be found for some time, which prompted a phone call to Fisher.
Even when Young returns from his injury, he might not get his job back.Incredible. And this isn't the first time there have been whispers of Young possibly giving up football. I cringe at the thought of what this guy's psyche would be like if he were playing in a different market. No disrespect to Nashville, Tennessee, but it never really struck me as one of the leagues more intense markets in terms of media and fan scrutiny. I'm sure the media can be tough, and obviously he's been booed, but that happens in every pro city, with every pro team, with just about every player.
The Titans believe Young's injury is one that will keep him out anywhere from 2-4 weeks.
Then there's the question about whether Young is interested in returning, something he mentioned to those who were with him on Monday.
"What would you think, if you were tired of being ridiculed and persecuted and talked about and not being treated very well, what would you do? What kind of decision would you make?'' Felecia Young asked. "He may not want to deal with it (all), but you have to get to that point before you make that decision first.
It seems to me -- and I could be wrong on this -- that the Titans play second fiddle to Tennessee Volunteers football. If he's struggling to cope with the pressure and boos there, what would he be going through in a city like New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh or Washington where the football teams are not just another team in the city, but the team?
Whatever is going on in Young's head right now, it seems that it's much bigger than football.