WRONG WAY: Just when it seemed as if Pacman Jones was on the road to NFL reinstatement, the serial bonehead got into trouble again — at a strip club, naturally.
The sad thing about Adam “Pacman” Jones is that we won’t have him to kick around in columns like this much longer. There are really only two outcomes left available for this kid, and neither of them involves any kind of celebrity as an active sports superstar. He’s either a) going to end up in a cell next to Cecil “the Diesel” Collins, drinking fermented prune juice out of a plastic bag and staring at a wall full of centerfolds for the next 15 to 18 hard years, or b) he’s going to graduate to the level of “former big-name athlete, often arrested on weird and disturbing minor charges,” à la former Nebraska Cornhuskers star linebacker Chad Kelsay — who, not long ago, was picked up for eating off of other customers’ plates at an Amigo’s in Lincoln.
It’s going to be one or the other, and there really isn’t any middle ground here. When last seen on the football field, Pacman Jones was the most dynamic and unstoppable athlete this side of Devin Hester, an absolute beast of a player who, on returns, walked through NFL linebackers like they were high-school cheerleaders, and on defense lit up wideout after wideout, leaving them shaking on the turf and communicating with team trainers using blinking eyelids. All this cat had to do to guarantee himself a $150 million career was not commit multiple violent felonies.
Think about that. How many guys currently in the prison system would be there if all they had to do to make $100K a week was not shoot, rape, or stab somebody? If you took all 2.7 million of America’s prisoners and asked each of them if they could handle a daily regime limited to playing football, getting repeatedly and spectacularly laid, drinking comped highballs, and buying gigantic diamond necklaces, how many of them would say, “No, sorry pal, I’ve got to work some A-felonies in there as well”? I bet you’re talking about maybe three, four thousand guys, tops. Not a lot.
And Pacman is one of them. Out of football this year after a pair of strip-club shooting incidents that in one case left a man paralyzed, Pacman stood a very good chance of being reinstated next season, provided he could stay out of trouble. Specifically, he had to stay out of strip clubs. But not only did he reportedly go to a strip club the night before a meeting with commissioner Roger Goodell earlier this fall, he also went again, and once again managed to get himself arrested. This time, he was accused of punching a female attorney in the eye in an Atlanta strip joint (sports-crime by-rule No. 16B: it’s always an Atlanta strip joint) called the Body Tap. Weirdly, the victim, a Wanda Jackson, was a lawyer handling a divorce case involving Jones.
The story goes that Jones accused Body Tap management of stealing one of his bracelets and stormed into the club office. When Jackson came over to “gawk,” as she put it, Jones allegedly lunged at her and punched her in the eye.
Jackson withdrew her petition for an arrest warrant the next day, and who knows what that means. But if not going to strip joints was all I had to do to make $10 million a year, I’d find a way to do it. With that much cash, can’t you order delivery?
Even with the charges dropped, you’ve gotta give Pacman serious points for this one. He was a league leader in 2007 and is an early favorite to eventually top the charts this year. Give him 50 to start, and let’s keep a close . . . well, let’s leave the eyes out of this. Keep tabs from here on in, say.
That was fast
Mammoth Oklahoma defensive tackle Demarcus Granger, one of this year’s first sports arrestees (he tried to boost a coat from a Burlington Coat Factory in Tempe, Arizona), is back in the news already. Apparently no one told him that after you get arrested, you have to return to court for a hearing. Granger missed his first court date on January 15, inspiring the issuance of a warrant under his name. His attorney got him off the hook, though, when a Tempe judge revoked the warrant, and now Granger is due back in court on March 3 for a pre-trial hearing. Let’s hope he writes the appointment down this time.
Meanwhile, there was another repeat visitor to the “Sports Blotter” this past week, when Chicago Bulls minor leaguer JamesOn Curry (yes, he’s got a capital “O” in there) got arrested in Idaho for peeing in an alley behind a hotel in the early-morning hours on January 17. When cops approached him to try to get him to stench the pee tide, Curry tried to run into the hotel . . . a dumb story, but it makes the wire because Curry was once famously denied a scholarship at UNC after selling weed to an undercover officer. Curry will likely be suspended by the Bulls, who have enough troubles without him.
I mention these minor cases in order to avoid discussing the Randy Moss Incident That Did Not Happen (my position heading into the Super Bowl). Once the post-season is over, we can revisit whether this incident took place.
When he’s not googling “the Pac is back” and “pee-and-run,” Matt Taibbi writes for Rolling Stone. He can be reached at
THE TALLY FOR THIS YEAR
JIM LEYRITZ (EX-YANKEES) | DUI manslaughter | 90
ADAM “PACMAN” JONES (TITANS) | being a menace to peaceful strip-club patrons everywhere | 50
JOHN STEPHENS (EX-PATRIOTS) | sex-assault fugitive | 48
DAVID CORNACCHIA (FLA. EVERBLADES) | mid-flight assault, head-butting bystanders, exposing wine-shrunken wiener | 46
DANIEL GRAHAM (BRONCOS) | ambiguous domestic-violence beef; hit a bedpost | 30
DEMARCUS GRANGER (OKLAHOMA) | stealing winter coat — in Arizona; refusing to appear | 21
GERALD JONES AND AHMAD PAIGE (TENNESSEE) | Cheech and Chong/Up in Smoke impersonation, while in car | 12
SHAUN WHITE (X-TREME SPORTS) | spraying fire extinguisher, acting like the little douchebag he is | 11