Staying up late on Thursday nights in February is nothing new to me, as I'm one of those NBA sickos that will stay up till one in the morning to see what Charles Barkley has to say on TNT's postgame show. However, yesterday was a little different.
Yes, I stayed up into the wee hours Thursday night, but it wasn't to watch the Chuckster, it was to watch Jacoby Jones' post-Super Bowl appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
And Jacoby did not disappoint.
Going into the interview I knew there were only a couple things we could completely count on from Jacoby -- mangled English (a lock) and a lot of smiling (who wouldn't smile after a Super Bowl win?). Other than that, this appearance was going to be a crapshoot.
It wouldn't have surprised me to see Jacoby pull off one of the all-time entertaining Kimmel segments, full of personality and about four or five new Jacoby-isms, and it wouldn't have surprised me if the interview was a total dud, flush with six-word answers to each of Kimmel's questions. I've interviewed Jacoby Jones before and gotten both of the above, so I speak from experience.
However, given how Jacoby's whole 2012 season (especially the 2013 postseason) has gone, I should have known that what ended up happening was going to happen: Jacoby was engaging, energetic, and at the end of the segment probably added about a million more fans than he had before.
In short, Jacoby's collective troll of the entire city of Houston, the only place on earth where he still maintains "monster heel" status, continued on national late night television Thursday night.
Here is the video footage, in case you missed it:
A few Zapruder style bullet points from that video:
0:28 -- Jacoby opted for the casual "jeans and black t-shirt" look, the perfect compliment to his Ravens bandana and shades. As someone who wears shorts and a t-shirt to work about four days a week, I'm in no position to criticize Jacoby's wardrobe choice. (Still, I think I just did.)
0:35 -- Jacoby points at his ring finger as if to say "Yeah buddy, who's a champion? Jacoby's a champion!" How's that taste, Houston?
0:59 -- Jacoby explains why he is wearing shades indoors for an interview on national television, and it's because the excitement of being on the Kimmel show has caused a blood vessel to pop in his eyeballs and made then "bloodshot red." "Excitement" could be, ahem, code for any number of things (I'm making the "holds a joint up to mouth" hand gesture right now, for those who can't see me).
I'm not accusing Jacoby of anything, really I'm not, I've just heard some legendary stories of the Kimmel show green room from people who've been on the show that there are plenty of, um, party materials available. That's all. Also, Jacoby is about to spend the next five minutes slurring several of his words. That too.
1:10 -- This exchange just took place:
KIMMEL: You haven't slept much in the last few days, have you...
JONES: (shakes head) Nah, I 'on't sleep...
KIMMEL: You don't sleep?
JONES: YEAH! I sleep! I'm 'onna get my sleep...
1:50 -- Kimmel asks about the 108-yard kickoff return and Jacoby tells the story about how he told the coaches he was going to take it out of the end zone even if it was kicked deep. At this point, in Houston, we were all the way down the rabbit hole: Jacoby Jones is on a national television show explaining a game-changing play he made in the return game. This is where many Texan fans were wishing there was a bizarro version of the Kimmel show that would have invited Jacoby on last year to break down the muff in the Ravens-Texans playoff game. 2:23 -- Kimmel brings up the lights going out during the game, and at this point Jacoby is completely comfortable on air, so he goes into a story about how he was glad the lights went out because he was tired and vomiting on the sidelines, including several vomiting sound effects. Jacoby, at this point, clinched at least a 7 on a scale of 1 to 10 on the entertainment scale.
2:50 --Asked about coming back to New Orleans (his hometown) for the biggest game of his career, Jacoby shows that despite the clownish antics and occasional brain fart, he is a pretty smart dude -- he delegated ticket duties to his mom! Well done. Also, his mom cooked 150 plates of gumbo, potato salad, and macaroni and cheese (seven different types of cheese!) for the entire Ravens team. Jacoby's mom needs to cash in on this fifteen minutes of fame and call the Food Network. NOW.
3:56 -- Kimmel shows a picture of Jacoby's bare back which is covered in a tattoo of the New Orleans skyline, and all I can think is "Thank God for him he didn't put Houston on there."
4:20 -- Kimmel asks Jacoby about his touchdown dances and asks if he practices them. Jacoby, not surprisingly, answers "DUH!" and then proceeds to talk about how he practices them in the mirror and asks for his teammates' input. Keep in mind that Jacoby has a total of 22 career touchdowns (including the playoffs) in six NFL seasons, so I would suppose he should be practicing his dances in his spare time since they rarely get broken out during games.
4:55 --Kimmel semi-jokingly offers Jacoby a spot on the next season of Dancing With The Stars, to which Jacoby gives an affirmative answer that involves polar bears taking a shit in the water or something. Seriously, no joking here, if Jacoby Jones' people aren't following up on the Kimmel "DWTS offer," even if it was a joke on Kimmel's part, then they are failing their client. We had Emmitt Smith on our show on Radio Row in New Orleans and he said he has just as many fans post-retirement because of his participation in DWTS as he does from being a Hall of Fame football player. (Donald Driver, Jerry Rice, and others have said the same thing.) DWTS raises your profile exponentially and allows for a pop culture crossover that can be noteworthy and, at its best, very lucrative.
And here's the thing: Jacoby Jones ain't Emmitt Smith. Or Jerry Rice. Or Donald Driver. He's a fraction of the football player those guys were, and not nearly the star that any of them is or was. Jacoby Jones' chance to strike gold is now. Not next week, not next month. NOW. He will be an afterthought in a few weeks, and come next year, when the blackjack shoe of life has stopped spitting out aces and face cards, he will be back to being a clownish, fairly popular, explosive return guy who can't catch a cold as a wide receiver and who nobody outside of Houston or Baltimore gives a shit about.
Of course, I say this and now Jacoby will probably be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize later this month.
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Such is life on Jacoby's Revenge Tour 2013.
Listen to Sean Pendergast on 1560 The Game from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. weekdays, and watch the simulcast on Comcast 129 from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.