At the very least, it is a poor choice of words by Todd Bowles. When asked at the NFL owners meetings about players showing up late to work, he responded:
“You’re going to always have tardiness with players. That’s part of it.Sometimes you’re late for work. It’s not life-threatening. Those guys after that were sharp, and we didn’t have a problem with them after that. Sometimes your alarm clock is not going to go off. It’s not going to be the end-all, be-all of football.”
It’s a missed opportunity. One of the burdens placed on coaches and management in the NFL is public relations. It is an unfair burden in many ways. Coaches should coach, management should find players and sign smart contracts. Owners should run the business. In sports, all three have to also manage media and fans. That means being politicians: saying what people want to hear. Unfortunately it is a reality of the mantle. Bowles could have scored a few free PR points, instead he gave local radio and columnists a free shot.
If Todd Bowles is any kind of boss, he does not tolerate people showing up late to work without permission or a good reason. Everyone in the Jets building is paid to show up on time and put forth their best effort. It is no different than any job.
The question about tardiness was prompted after Sheldon Richardson & Muhammad Wilkerson were benched last year for being late to meetings. It is unknown if the message was received.
Do Bowles’ comments really reflect his attitude toward players showing up late to work? Is it a case where he does not care about public relations? In New York only results matter; you don’t keep your job for being politically correct. He could simply say one thing in public and practice another in private. It will be interesting to see if any players are disciplined for showing up late this season.