Foster: Problems with perception of athletes

Foster: Problems with perception of athletes
April 14, 2014, 1:45 pm
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(Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports)

Arian Foster believes athletes are incorrectly put up on pedestals by fans and are inappropriately scrutinized by the media when they find themselves in trouble.

“I think a big thing is the expectations placed on the kids by the fans, the viewers, by us. I say us retrospectively,” Foster said in Los Angeles while promoting the movie “Draft Day,” in which he has a role. “You want your athlete to be a certain way. You want your athlete to be well spoken, articulate, clean off the field and yada, yada, yada. But look at society. Society’s not like that. So you can’t put unreal expectations, and when somebody steps outside of the box of what an athlete is supposed to be you chastise them for it.”

Foster hasn’t ever been in legal trouble during his NFL career. But the former All Pro did make headlines a few months ago when a University of Houston coed went public and accused Foster of impregnating her and then asking her to get an abortion. Foster, who is married with children, is far from being the first person, famous or not, to be accused of an extramarital affair.

Foster’s character in the movie is Ray Jennings, a running back out of Florida State who carries the baggage of a rap sheet heading into the draft. Jennings is one of the players the Browns and general manager Sunny Weaver, played by Kevin Coster, are considering in selecting in the first round. The question that sparked Foster’s response was about Jennings’ decision to contact Weaver to tell him first-hand about his off-the-field troubles and how issues such as those affect players entering the draft in real life.

“I think the viewer should have more of a sense of a real world view. I can’t put any expectations on anybody else that I don’t hold myself too,” Foster said. “So if I make mistakes, somebody else is going to make mistakes and just be a little more forgiving as a whole. Because you see guys that get DUIs or whatever and they get crucified for weeks on ESPN. I think it’s a whole accountability thing. Everybody makes mistakes.”

As for the movie, despite decent reviews, it finished fourth in the box office this weekend racking up $9.8 million during its opening weekend run. Foster, for his role in the film, has been getting solid reviews as well.

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