Chad Johnson deserved to be cut from the Miami Dolphins in a respectful way, whether you like him or not, but that's not what viewers of HBO's Hard Knocks saw Tuesday evening.
I don't care that Philbin was sad when he brought the 11-year veteran into his office. That was expected, but Philbin handled the situation in a really odd way.
It was almost bizarre.
Philbin was awkward, failed to get to the point and dragged a painful process on much longer than it needed to go.
Both sides were aware of the situation when the meeting was called. Johnson knew what he did, and Philbin obviously knew how that meeting in his office was going to end. Why couldn't he just say "Chad, you know what you did. Sorry, this isn't going to work out"?
Instead he played it out like he was doing it for the cameras in the room. He didn't mention any word even resembling "cut," opting for loose phrases surrounding the point instead.
Watching anything about the Dolphins is tough enough right now, but this was worse than I expected. Johnson's an 11-year NFL veteran, and I'm sure he had a pretty good idea what this meeting was about.
With, or without, a checkered past he knew that he didn't have many chips to bargain with as a 31-year-old, regressing receiver with a thirst for attention.
Maybe my perception of how this should have happened was wrong, but I anticipated a "hello, goodbye" meeting. Instead, Hard Knocks viewers had to watch two guys take part in a tremendously clumsy exchange regarding the potential end of one man's career.
I'm sure Johnson is having a hard time, and he should be given his inexcusable actions, but I'd like to know how this would have happened if the cameras weren't around.
If Johnson hadn't already learned his lesson, I bet he did after sitting through this torturous meeting with Philbin.