The premise: Coming off a Super Bowl victory, the Patriots open the 2013 season with a blowout win. Unfortunately, they get into trouble for Spygate II. As punishment, Roger Goodell orders the Patriots to fire Bill Belichick and replace him with Emmitt Smith. Three years later, the Patriots beat the Bears in the Super Bowl, 2-0. After the game, Emmitt announced his retirement.
This is a weekly feature that will take a newspaper reporter's perspective and follow Emmitt through his post-retirement days.
By Alex Rodriguez, Special to the NFL Bible Network Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018
We interrupt the manhunt for the Lloyd family killers to bring you some breaking news: Starting quarterback Josh Freeman has been released by the Edmonton Eskimos.
The Eskimos, who are currently in last place in the NFL's newest division, the AFC USA, will go with Napoleon Glennon, younger brother of Buccaneers' quarterback Mike Glennon, as their starter.
Though we all saw this move coming, Freeman was blindsided by the news.
"I just can't believe it," Freeman said. "I knew some stuff was going bad, but I never thought I'd get released. I figured the Eskimos would trade me for three first-round picks or something because I'm such a great quarterback."
The "some stuff was going bad" comment by Freeman is a hell of an understatement. Teammates started getting the sense something was wrong when Freeman blew off the team picture and sent the winner from the local Michael Jackson look-alike contest in his place.
"We got the idea that this person wasn't Josh because he was about half a foot shorter," said wide receiver Vincent Jackson, so signed yet another 5-year, $55.5 million contract this offseason in honor of his quarterback. "He had the same perm though and he kept going 'hee-hee' and moonwalking, which is what Josh usually does, so we were conflicted. But then someone tossed him a football, and he tried to shield himself, so that's when we knew it wasn't him."
The team photo wasn't the only thing Freeman skipped recently. He had a scheduled appointment with an 8-year-old boy dying of cancer via the Make a Wish Foundation. The child, who had been given only 24 hours to live, said his final dream was to spend an hour or so with his favorite football player. Freeman didn't show up, and the boy died of a broken heart hours later.
"I'm sorry, I overslept because I forgot to set my alarm clock," Freeman said. "What? Yeah I know the meeting was at 4 p.m. I always nap between noon and 5 p.m. every single day, you got a problem with that?"
Freeman was stripped of his captaincy and ultimately benched the previous weekend, prompting him to set up yet another interview with ESPN's Josina Anderson.
"It's not fair, they took the 'C' away from my jersey, and my favorite letter is 'C'!" whined Freeman to a teary-eyed Anderson. "And then they said that I killed that kid! I would never kill any kids. My alarm clock is just evil and didn't want me to meet with him. And that really was me at the team photo. Hee-hee!"
It was later announced that Freeman is a part of the NFL's substance-abuse program. The former Eskimo quarterback wasn't too pleased that this news was released.
"I'm going to sue everyone for libel!" Freeman bellowed to an even more teary-eyed Anderson. "I'm going to start with that WalterFootball.com a**hole. He's been saying s*** about me for years, so now I'm going to take all of his money! Hee-hee!"
We can only hope that Walter Cherepinsky, owner of WalterFootball.com, has some high-priced lawyers on retainer because it seems as though Freeman will stop at nothing to get revenge - assuming, of course, he remembers to set his alarm so that he makes it to court on time.
JOSH FREEMAN'S SECRET IS EXPOSED
By Alex Rodriguez, Special to the NFL Bible Network Friday, Nov. 9, 2018
Truth is an absolute defense for libel, but what is a journalist supposed to do when his sources aren't willing to come forward with the inside information they initially offered? It's quite the conundrum, and that's exactly what some ESPN and FOX Sports reporters, as well as Walter Cherepinsky of WalterFootball.com, were confronted with when Freeman announced to ESPN's Josina Anderson in an interview that he planned on suing everyone.
Fortunately, truth won't be needed in court or any sort of legal situation because Freeman's addiction has been exposed on camera.
The daily tour of Commonwealth Stadium, home of the Eskimos, was taking place Thursday afternoon. It seemed like a completely normal day.
"If you want to ask any questions aboot the hoose that John LaGrone, Tommy Coffey and Warren Moon built, please hold it to the end, eh?" the tour guide asked. "Believe me, there is much to see aboot our beloved Edmonton Eskimos organ-I-zation."
The tour guide then led the Canadians into the team's locker room.
"Now, we'll look at the locker room before we do the daily dipping of the hands in butterscotch pudding at 1 oo'clock, eh," he said. "Then, we'll-"
He stopped suddenly and his jaw dropped once he saw that the team's former quarterback was on the floor. Around Freeman were various, colorful shapes. The tour guide actually stepped on a couple, and they made a familiar crunchy sound.
"Everyone get oot, now, eh!" the tour guide bellowed. He then called the Canadian authorities, who ride moose and videotape everything they encounter. However, the Canadian authorities were baffled by the small, crunchy, colorful shapes on the floor, so they had to call in for some American assistance.
"This is serious, very serious," Emmitt told the Canadian authorities, who were still on their moose and videotaping what was taking place.
"Of course we know it's serious; that's why we called you, eh!" barked one of the Canadian authority people.
"No, not that serious; the other kind of serious," Emmitt said. "The kind of serious you eat for breakfast where you pour milk into ball and then eat with a fork."
The Canadian authorities looked befuddled, but that's because Canada hasn't invented cereal yet. It took Emmitt a couple of hours to explain what cereal was and why it happened to be appealing. Emmitt was able to determine that this particular cereal was Trix. This confused the Canadian authorities even more because Canadians are too polite to ever trick anyone.
Suddenly, Freeman's opened. He sprung up and began screaming, "I need more Trix! I finally got to eat Trix, but I need more! More! I need more Trix!"
Emmitt tackled and restrained Freeman, who finally came clean about everything. Freeman was addicted to Trix when he played for the Buccaneers. His dependency was at its worst when the team collapsed in 2011, and then it resurfaced early in 2013. Now, marooned in Canada, where there is no cereal, Freeman was suffering from a severe case of withdrawal.
"I initially set up that meeting with that kid - the stupid, dying one - because I thought he might request Trix as his last meal, but my personal assistant told me that he wanted macaroni and cheese - what an idiot!" Freeman snarled.
"And with that team photo thing, my personal assistant gave me a lead on Trix," Freeman continued, with extreme frustration in his voice. "These kids had them in the park. I tried to sneak up behind them and steal them, but they saw me and yelled, 'Silly Josh Freeman, Trix are for kids!' and then they laughed at me. I hate getting laughed at, especially when I can't have Trix!"
Emmitt had one final question for Freeman: "How did you come about to get these Trick or Treats?" referring to the cereal on the floor.
"Oh, that," Freeman snickered. "I came back to Commonwealth Stadium to take my belongings out of the locker when I saw him - this giant, white rabbit was holding a box of Trix! So, I snuck up behind him and grabbed him. Then, I carried him over to the hot tub and drowned him. I would've taken bets on how long he'd last - Michael Vick taught me this - but there was no one around to take those bets. He lasted 45 seconds, and now he's dead. You can find his corpse in the garbage. Hee-hee!"
So, the Trix Rabbit is dead, Freeman's dirty secret has been exposed, and every reporter, including WalterFootball, is safe from a libel lawsuit. Just your typical week in the NFL.