Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images
As is the case with Donovan McNabb, I have to believe that the legendary proportions of laziness regarding Russell have unfairly reached mythical status.
There's no way a player reaches that point of success in college and through the draft process without having some level of work ethic ingrained in him. No matter how much money he earns right off the bat, that's not going to completely evaporate...nor would a coaching staff and front office allow it.
Nevertheless, there is always some truth to these types of behind-the-scenes rumors. For Russell to be so unceremoniously discarded proves that.
If being out of shape and overweight wasn't enough to prove that Russell lacked even a marginal work ethic, Russell's head coach Tom Cable sealed the deal in the spring of 2009, Russell's final NFL season:
If he can accept the responsibility of being an NFL quarterback, I think that's working more, working harder, working longer than everybody else, accepting the responsibility that his teammates look to him as the face of the organization, that he has to go above and beyond almost on a daily basis, I think that comes with that position, whether that's right or wrong, that's what it is, if he can accept that and become that, he'll be fine. He'll be great, I think. Has he done that? I think during the last six weeks he started to, during the season. I think thus far in the offseason he's been around more than ever. He was never around like this on his own, just watching tape, studying, so that's a step in the right direction. I think he has to embrace that, though, for him to be what he should be.