Matt Kalil Needs To Stop Worrying About What We Think Of Him


It’s fun writing a blog about football. It’s fun going on Twitter and taking snarky shots. It’s fun acting like a football know-it-all and occasionally getting under players’ skin so much they even call you out by name (hi Brian).

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It’s sports. It’s supposed to be fun. At the end of the day, little of what I say on here really matters. Little of what I tweet matters.

Though some fans have a hard time grasping this, little of what they say matters either. It’s all just a big loud silly noise, really. When you get right down to it.

I understand how irrelevant all this is in the final analysis, and most fans do as well (at least the smart ones do). So why doesn’t Matt Kalil understand it?

Kalil has taken his place as the most embattled Viking after playing truly wretched football for most of the season. This was supposed to be the year the 2012 4th overall pick took the next step and became a top-of-the-line left tackle, but instead he has regressed alarmingly.

Instead of perfecting his technique, Kalil seems to have forgotten everything he ever knew. His footwork and balance have become atrocious, he isn’t using his hands well, he keeps losing his focus and getting called for penalties.

Pretty much everything that can go wrong for a left tackle is going wrong for Matt Kalil.

Bad as things are, you’d think Kalil would understand that the last thing he wants is to compound his problems by going to war with fans and media.

The team has done its best to deflect criticism away from Kalil, but even the reassuring words of Rick Spielman and Norv Turner are not strong enough to protect Kalil.

The Vikings are trying to build a bubble around Kalil but the bubble keeps bursting. It seems Kalil can’t stop listening to his critics in the media and among the fans.

Things came to a head for Kalil after yesterday’s three penalty performance against the Packers. Kalil brushed off the media after the game, bolting from the facility rather than answer reporters’ questions.

Not a great way to get the media on your side. In fact, such behavior is the perfect way to bring even more heat against you.

But Kalil took it one step farther. After making it to the parking lot, he began getting into it with heckling fans. One fan got under Kalil’s skin so much that he stopped and confronted the man, taking the man’s hat off and throwing it.

Video of the incident has now surfaced on Deadspin. Kalil can’t deny that it happened now. We’ve all seen how he behaved.

Blowing off the media is bad enough, but getting into it with fans is unacceptable. Yes the fan was a jerk for heckling Kalil, but Kalil made a big mistake by responding.

Not only did Kalil put himself in a position where something more physical and potentially destructive could’ve happened, he also basically guaranteed that the fans are never going to let up.

If Kalil thought the fans were down on him before, just wait. This incident will only cement his reputation as a big dopey crybaby and a draft bust. Fans will boo him harder now, heckle him harder, rip him harder on the internet.

Why is he letting us get under his skin so much? Clearly this guy is brittle. It’s alarming to realize how immature and insecure Kalil truly is.

Knowing what kind of character this guy has, it’s not surprising that he’s struggling so hard to clean up his problems. You have to wonder if this guy possesses the mental faculties necessary to get himself turned around.

Can a guy so fragile ever regain the confidence necessary to perform in the NFL?

It’s too bad someone can’t sit Matt Kalil down and explain to him what the deal is.

“Matt, it’s like this,” I would say if I had the chance. “You know we’re all just idiots out here. Fans. Media. Even those PFF guys don’t really know what’s going on. Listen to Norv Turner when he tells you to just ignore all that stuff.

“We’re just noise and hot air and bulls–t. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do. You can’t let people bother you like that. If you fight back it’s only going to make it worse.

“At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks except your coaches. Listen to Brian Robison. He knows.”

Someone needs to convey that message to Matt Kalil. Tell him to stop listening to idiots like me and the heckling fan. Stop worrying about his PFF grades. Stop letting the Jim Souhans of the world get to him.

If Kalil can’t get this message and tune out the naysayers, then he’s probably just not mentally fit enough to handle the grind of the NFL. He was just a bad draft pick and now the Vikings will have to find a new left tackle.

Too bad because I actually thought Kalil was going to be good. I guess I was wrong. I’m wrong a lot, because I’m just a dope with a blog and a Twitter account.

See how that works Matt?