Back in what is now an almost-forgotten age, football players would take their grudges and trash talk out onto the field and leave them there. We don't live in that world.
Once upon a time, if a defensive back had something to say to a quarterback, he'd say it after pulling off a spirit-breaking interception, not take to the Internet like a 15-year-old girl who had a bad day at school (looking at you Antonio Cromartie).
Nowadays, most every NFL player has a Twitter, and these guys are not shy about sharing their opinions with their legions of followers.
Thankfully for us fans, those opinions are frequently inflammatory, and in certain cases pretty hilarious.
These Twitter Wars have become such commonplace that we don't think twice when ESPN reports a feud as "news," and let's all be honest for a second here—we enjoy it.
It's like watching an episode of "Keeping up with the Kardashians" or "Jersey Shore." We don't want to admit it, but there is entertainment value.
Here are five recent NFL Twitter Wars that have caught our intrigue.
Just last year we had a fun little war of words about the lockout between veteran quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie.
Cromartie had made disparaging public comments about the NFLPA's leadership, causing Hasselbeck to tweet "Somebody ask Cromartie if he knows what CBA stands for."
That tweet by itself wasn't too interesting, but things got real pretty quickly when Hasselbeck deleted the post, prompting this reply from Cromartie: "hey Matt if u have something to say be a man about it. Don't erase it. I will smash ur face in (sic)."
That's the part where I laughed.
"Sorry for the joke man. No hard feelings. DB's & QB's have a hard time getting along I guess sometimes. lol (sic)."
Let's be clear, that was pretty weak of Hasselbeck to delete a post that everyone had already seen. Having said that, Cromartie made himself look like a fool (big surprise).
In his deleted post, Hasselbeck was essentially questioning Cromartie's intellect and maturity, and Cromartie responds with "I will smash ur face in." Really Antonio?
It makes you wonder if he was at recess in the schoolyard when he came up with that one.
Personally, I'm glad he did. We all needed something to smile at during the lockout.
Granted, this is not a Twitter war between two players, but it is still no less hysterical. Besides which, one of the combatants is the king of Tweeting athletes himself, Mr. Ochocinco.
You combine his eccentric, attention-seeking nature with the king of all haters in Skip Bayless and throw in some personal history, and you have a hilariously volatile mix.
Skip got up to his usual antics, antagonizing the wide receiver into an angry response. Ocho was ever classy in telling good old Skippy to shut it, which was well deserved.
Bayless made ridiculous comments about Ochocinco being "a disgrace to the Patriot Way" (10 bucks says Tedy Bruschi made him say that), and how he'd be cut by October of this year.
1. We have no idea what he means by the "Patriot Way."
2. It's December and Ochocinco is still a Patriot. Just saying, there Skippy.
As if Bayless wasn't ridiculous enough here, he ended the argument with this insufferably pompous remark: "For newcomers: I always say Please Child to Ocho just to get under his skin and in his head. It always works, doesn't it Chad?"
Skip ... just stop talking.
For a full transcript of the lengthy Tweet-fight check here.
We already know that Desean Jackson is an extremely immature football player and severely lacking in class. Those of you who saw his flagrant taunting penalty on Sunday Night Football two weeks ago know what I'm talking about. If not, see above.
Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee took exception to the display of 12-year-old antics, Tweeting “Desean Jackson is a punk. #growuputinybastard (sic).”
After some backlash for calling Jackson a "tiny bastard," Scobee clarified with: “Relax people. He’s just a punk, which to me means he doesn’t respect anyone or anything around him. Therefore, I don’t respect him.”
Jackson took exception to Scobee's remarks, even after Scobee gave a quasi-half-hearted-sort-of apology for his choice of words.
“This man @joshscobee is Waaaaaaay outta LIne!! Stick to ya Own business.. Mind ya own!! I don’t respect what u sayin.. Lil Boi status, plus I don’t even know who this guy is!! (sic).”
It is a wonderful thing to see somebody calling Jackson on his nonsense. Admit it, even if you're an Eagles fan, you don't really like him.
Remember when I compared Tweet-trash-talking NFL players to high school girls? I was referring to these two.
Lesean McCoy and Osi Umenyiora have never really liked one another, but they really went at it during the lockout after Umenyiora began demanding a new contract.
McCoy tweeted that Umenyiora is "overrated," and the "third-best D-Lineman on his team."
Umenyiora decided to shoot back by calling McCoy Lady Gaga (huh?), referring to him as a she, throwing around words like "I hate him," and referring to him as a "Twitter Gangster."
My only question following this particular feud: Will these two take off their fake nails and earrings when they fight each other? This is football, there are ways to show a guy you don't like how you feel.
Nobody won in this war ... well except all of us fans, because we got to laugh at them.
This one is jaw-droppingly amazing. The only problem is, it is honestly impossible to tell whether these guys are being serious or just joking around. The judgement could go either way.
History tells us that Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens have at the very least a friendly relationship, so are the vicious shots in here for real, or are they playful?
If they are playing around, these guys are comedic geniuses.
If they are being serious then ... well ... damn ... somebody call them a babysitter.
I'll let the transcript speak for itself below.
@terrellowens Man its your f_cking fault my QB is retiring, I should whoop your ass cause they're blaming me you f_cking Diva!!!
@ochocinco I should whoop ur a** 4 asking me 2 come 2 Cincy! Yeh it's my fault tht he's retiring but not if I woulda had 15 TDs instead of 9
@terrellowens F_ck yo touchdowns we went 4-12 and now my QB is leaving and they blaming me,you taking 50% of the blame for this sh_t!!!
@ochocinco And so much ur "Batman & Robin" idea!!
@ochocinco Where the hell ws Robin all year?
Cincinnati Bengals rock!!! Anybody that doesn't like us F_ck you and the horse you rode in on!!! Who F_cking Dey!!! (Ocho)
My vote says these two were just messing around. It's more fun that way.