Stephen A. Smith seems to view himself as the moral arbiter for all athletes.
On Friday, the Chicago Bears traded their disgruntled wide receiver, Chase Claypool, to the Miami Dolphins. The trade also included late-round draft pick exchanges.
Claypool had been benched for the past two games by the Bears, with the coaching staff expressing dissatisfaction with his commitment both on and off the field.
During the Friday morning episode of “First Take,” Stephen A. Smith had a direct message for Claypool. He aimed to convey to the former second-round pick that he is acquiring a concerning reputation.
“Chase Claypool, please listen to me. This ain’t about football. Everyone knows you can play. We saw your skills in Pittsburgh before you got traded to Chicago. You are developing a very bad reputation,” Smith said. “… If you don’t turn it around, this could very well be your last stop. Whatever it is going on up here, please get it together so you can shine and show the world what you can do as a football player. If you keep getting moved, the message is going to be indelibly sent, you’re not somebody they want in the locker room.”
Claypool enjoyed productivity during his time in Pittsburgh, where he recorded 153 receptions for 2,044 yards and 12 touchdowns. However, in Chicago, his performance dipped significantly, with only 18 catches for 191 yards and one touchdown.
There’s a glimmer of hope that Claypool might be able to revitalize his career with the Dolphins. If not, he could find himself without an NFL contract by the next season. This could potentially be Chase Claypool’s final opportunity to make a lasting impact, as they say, “three strikes and you’re out of the league.”