Cleveland WR Josh Cribbs Tweets Inappropriate Sentiments, Issues Apology
By: Kim O'Hara | Posted: December 27, 2012
Players may be nearing the end of their seasons, but at least there's no offseason on Twitter. Yet another athlete took to the social media outlet to respond to fan heckling after Cleveland dropped its tenth game of the season. Wide receiver / vaunted kick returner Josh Cribbs, who muffed a fourth quarter punt in a blowout loss against Denver, posted this colorful response (censored here for decency's sake):
I see all the negativity on twitter after I gave my life to this [BEEP]. So 2 all u who are against me [BEEP] all y'all! I'm still gonna do me!
Cribbs is an unrestricted free agent this offseason, and though he once contributed to the Browns as one of the NFL's most explosive kick returners, Cribbs has offered significantly less in recent seasons. This season has welcomed rookie Travis Benjamin, who proved himself adept at the kick return game (four of his five kick/punt returns went for more than twenty yards including one touchdown), so the odds of Cribbs remaining in Cleveland are somewhere between slim and none. But since he's likely to enter the free market this spring, Cribbs summarily deleted the tweet and engaged in a little (publicist-encouraged, no doubt) damage control. He spoke with the Akron Beacon Journal after Wednesday's practice to explain himself:
“If you hit me at the right time, you press my buttons in the right way, finagle some things, I might say some things I’m going to regret. And that’s all that was. The position that we’re in, you can’t do that. And I knew that when I pressed send. I just let my anger get the best of me, my frustration.”
And once again, therein lies the rub for professional athletes. For his part, Cribbs did say it was just 10-15 fans (whom he referred to as "bad apples") heckling him to the point of his ill-advised technological outburst. He also explained that head coach Pat Shurmur declined to fine him for his actions, opting instead to simply ask that Cribbs delete the offending message.
Where Cribbs winds up and whether his next contract will be be affected by any perceived attitude concerns remains to be seen. But if Sunday is his last outing in a Browns jersey, Cribbs will have the opportunity to sweep division rival Pittsburgh at Heinz Field. If Cleveland does manage to pull off such a feat, it would be safe to expect some more colorful Cribbs tweets of an entirely different nature.
im O'Hara is the Associate Editor of TheFootballGirl.com. She is an avid fan of sports in general, but the NFL in particular. She has also been a contributor to ESPN the Magazine. Follow her on Twitter: @KimOHaraTFG
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