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The social media debate: Should #Jets Players Tweet?

The social media debate:  Should #Jets Players Tweet?

Ah the social media debate, I love talking about twitter in particular when it comes to the do’s and dont’s for professional athletes.  We have seen in the past how an ill advised tweet can go viral and make it’s rounds through the media faster than the speed of sound.  Some Jets players have been guilty of this, eh hem, Antonio Cromartie.  (He’s the Cardinals problem now).

It seems that our first round rookie, Calvin Pryor is a big trash talker on the field, and Jets fans are learning quickly that he is one on twitter as well.  If you missed it, he had a jawing match with Rookie TE Eric Ebron late Tuesday night, but both players quickly deleted their tweets.  Of course, Jets Twit was able to grab screen captures before that happened.

Jack Bechta, from The National Football Post site, put out a great list for rookies entering the NFL.  High on his list at number two:  STAY OFF OF SOCIAL MEDIA.  Now as a blogger, I hate this advise.  I especially hate this advice due to the fact that my blog is called JETS TWIT as in covering what player do on twitter and social media.

My site was never to be a dead-spin or a TMZ, but it seems that the big stories to cover is when a Jets player says something that gets everyone’s attention and as of late they could be controversial tweets.

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Here is what Jack says in his article about social media:

2) Stay off Twitter and Instagram:

In the movie “Draft Day”, there was a line about twitter and how much teams hate when players use it. It’s so true, especially for young players. NFL teams can’t take away a players right to express himself socially but they can and will encourage them not to.

When Jim Harbaugh was at Stanford, he was a twitter darling with the opportunity to exponentially grow his personal following by millions upon taking the Niners job. Growing a massive following can translate into endorsement dollars. However, Jim quit twitter once the Niners hired him. He told me, “It’s not something he wanted to encourage his players to do and didn’t want to be a hypocrite by still doing it.”

Many of the Patriots players also avoid twitter because they know Belichick can’t stand it. The NFL is very competitive and teams don’t want anything proprietary leaked to the general public.

Furthermore, when a player voices his personal opinion of football and non-football matters, an unpopular tweet can mean damage control for a team. GMs, owners and head coaches despise dropping what they are doing and going into damage control mode. So it’s just best for rookies to stay away until they’ve been in the league for a few years and have established themselves. Even then, I would advise to limit the use of all social media tools.

If a young player is compelled to use social media, use it to bring attention to the community, charitable causes, congratulating teammates, promoting the team, and/or to thank well-wishers.

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  • QBTalk

    It’s a distraction but if players are not on Twitter shows like First Take and others are not talking about them.

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