If you thought the most sensational regional sports network promotion involving a quarterback would be coming out of New York (think Tebow), think again.
Just in time for Memorial Day, Comcast SportsNet Washington started airing a station ID praising the town’s new savior under center, Robert Griffin III, the player that the Redskins traded up four spots in the NFL Draft top ten to select.
There’s no video of it on YouTube, but it’s moot because it’s a very brief promo, and the Washington Post’s Dan Steinberg has provided the three vital screengrabs from the ID.
Yet it’s the third and final still that may give you chills.
Behind the Iwo Jima Memorial are the words “Welcome Home RGIII” attached to the Comcast SportsNet logo, with a giant Redskins logo serving as the backdrop.
Mind you, RGIII has yet to even take a snap in an official NFL game. And the network is already likening him to a major historical figure – as if he’d won the Super Bowl.
Look, this kid might be the real deal, but it’s a little too early to start superimposing him over Washington landmarks – and in the case of the Iwo Jima composite, it would probably be in the best interest of CSN not to desecrate it with “Welcome Home RGIII.”
Especially since he wasn’t even born on American soil: his parents Jacqueline and Robert Jr., both Army Sergeants, were stationed in Japan in 1990 when Robert III was born.
Later, the family relocated to Fort Lewis in Washington – no, not Washington, D.C., but Tacoma, Washington.
Yes, he lived in the “other” Washington in the past. And now, a Washington, D.C. regional sports network is welcoming him “home” through the imagery of Iwo Jima.
Give me a break.
Dave Hughes of DCRTV.com shared the photo on Facebook and wondered, “Is there just something a bit tasteless, as we approach Memorial Day, with a promo for a highly paid pro football star that uses images of soldiers who died for our freedom?”
“I agree, that imagery’s a little much,” read one response to Hughes’ question, while another lamented, “Enough of us pledging allegiance to some dope who carries around a ball.”
Granted, CSN isn’t the first party – and sadly, probably won’t be the last – to doctor the Iwo Jima image for their own causes. Most recently, The Daily Show altered the statue for a proposed Occupy Wall Street monument, port-a-potty and all.
Okay. Even if the Redskins signed Najeh Davenport, I doubt that CSN would go there.
But it’s a bit foolish to update the look of any war memorial for the benefit of a second-overall draft pick from Baylor. Especially with Memorial Day around the corner.
Bad concept. Bad timing. Everything about the idea is bad.
And should Robert Griffin III get run out of his “home,” that would really look bad.