Finally, take a look at this last response. Wayne was asked if he fought with coach Ryan about the decision to bench him. He could have responded by saying, “Of course I did. I want to play. I am going to do everything I can to get better and earn my spot back.” He didn’t say that. Instead, he said:
I’ve always been fighting for my job, now or last year. I’ve always felt like I’ve been fighting for my job because I haven’t proven consistently that I’m that guy for the right tackle spot, hence the move that they’re making right now. I always feel like I’m going to prove myself in the future. It’s just the way it is.
The last page and a half do not reflect the words of a fighter. Hunter does not sound like a guy who is driven to be the starter, and who is going to prove the world wrong by earning his job back. No, he sounds like a beaten man. He sounds like a guy that feels like he deserves to be benched. He knows he isn’t good, and doesn’t sound like he is going to get any better.
When you are a beaten athlete mentally, you have to come off the field. It’s a good thing that Hunter did.