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NFL Rookie QB Update: Mettenberger Sucker-Punched, Manziel Smitten, Madden Ratings Reaction (VIDEO)

At the risk of sounding like Chris Berman (which is a horrible risk to take, nonetheless...), there's an old lyric in the Eagles' iconic hit "Hotel California," you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave.

It rings true for so many things, not the least of which is the status of "SEC football player."

Yeah, you can get drafted into the NFL, you can sign that first contract, attend OTAs and become a full-fledged member of an NFL roster, but to most of the mouth-breathing psychopaths in the SEC footprint, you'll still always be "that moppy haired asshole who plays for our archival."

Zach Mettenberger found this out the hard way.

The Titans rookie quarterback was out and about in Nashville this past weekend, spending time at a place called Losers Most Wanted Bar & Grill on Division Street, where Mettenberger was the victim of a sucker punch, according to the owner of the bar, Steve Ford.

Courtesy of the Tennessean, here are the details:

Steve Ford said Monday that the 6-foot-5, 224-pound former LSU star did nothing to provoke another bar patron and did not throw any punches.

"Here's the truth: The guy said something about 'Roll Tide!' to Zach, and Zach turned around and said 'Good luck with that,' " Ford said. "And the guy's buddy then sucker-punched Zach.

"I promise you that Mettenberger did not throw a punch. He didn't do anything. The guy sucker-punched him in the eye, that's the bottom line, and the guy that punched him started running out the door. My door guys had to chase him down."

Mettenberger, a sixth-round draft pick, did not require medical attention at the scene. On Sunday night, he cleared up a fan message-board rumor that indicated he'd broken his hand in an incident at a local bar.

"Bogus rumor," Mettenberger said in a direct message via Twitter.

The moral of the story, as always, is that the phrase "Roll Tide" coming from a human being's lips should evoke the same reaction from those nearby as would the snarl of a coked-up black bear. If a Bama fan is uttering the phrase "Roll Tide," it means he (or she) is ready to pounce. It is the "fighting position" of sports catchphrases.

The proper reaction from Mettenberger upon hearing "Roll Tide" should have been to a) scurry out of the room like the Road Runner or b) brandish a weapon that would subdue or kill said Bama fan.

Would you say, "Good luck with that" to a snarling, coked-up black bear? No, of course not. So part of this is on Mettenberger. He should know better than to antagonize a zoo animal (or a drunk Bama fan, same thing).

That said, a proportional response is in order -- so I say we give James Carville prima nocta on Katherine Webb and call it even.   Manziel Celebrates Booming Jersey Sales By Nuzzling On Twitter It's difficult for NFL rookies to make an impact on the field early in their careers. It's a different game than college, with a lot to learn and a ton to absorb. Hell, some rookies aren't even getting a chance to see the field in their first year. For example, Johnny Manziel is still listed behind Brian Hoyer on the Browns' depth chart at quarterback.

Tough to make an impact from the bench...unless we are talking jersey sales, in which case Johnny Manziel is Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers all rolled up into one!

Since the draft, the Manziel #2 Cleveland jersey is the NFL's top seller! The other rookies in the top 25 include Michael Sam (6th), Teddy Bridgewater (13th), Jadeveon Clowney (16th) and Blake Bortles (18th).

Manziel celebrated the news by nuzzling TCU coed Colleen Crowley on Twitter...

Indeed, these jersey sales numbers make it clear that if people can't play like Johnny, they certainly want to dress like him. Also, it makes it clear that the best way to move jerseys is to forcefully choose one side of the sexual orientation scale or the other -- either extreme heterosexual (Manziel) or openly homosexual (Sam).

MADDEN Ratings Reaction Video Finally, we leave you tonight (that's my "news guy" voice) with a video of NFL rookies getting a wake-up call. Each and every year, the league, along with EA Sports, releases the Madden video game, and each and every year, the rookies in the league discover that they're not nearly as highly thought of skill/speed/strength/awareness-wise as they are in their own homes.

Here is a video of some prominent members of this year's rookie class learning what the creators of Madden have them rated for the upcoming season:

For the record, Texans fans, you'll be glad to know that Jadeveon Clowney is the highest-rated rookie in the game, with an 83 overall score. Supposedly, if you slide him to defensive end, his score goes up to 92 (I actually heard this from someone.).

I'd find it hilarious if camp opened with Clowney at defensive end and, when asked about it, Romeo Crennel called it a "hunch," and then Texans TV catches him late at night playing Madden in his office.

We need something to liven things up around here.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.


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