Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Reid dilemma

Much as he would no doubt like it to, the problem is not going to go away.

Not for Andy Reid. Not for the Philadelphia Eagles, either.

Andy Reid is the head coach of the Eagles. That gets him on the Back Page of this newspaper, and the front page of a lot of sports sections.
But he also has been getting on the front page of newspapers, as well as on every TV and radio newscast, for something else.

All is not well in the Reid house.

The problems with Reid’s two sons, Garrett and Britt, are now well known.

Both are battling the kind of drug and alcohol demons that many of us deal with. The difference is that they do not get the luxury of doing so in relative anonymity. That is because, like it or not, their father is big news in this town.

Both Garrett, 24, and his younger brother Britt, 22, now reside in the Montgomery County Prison.

Britt has been there since Aug. 24 after it was determined he had violated conditions of his release. He pleaded guilty in a road-rage incident in which he is believed to have brandished a weapon after an altercation with a driver. Then he was taken into custody after being stopped in the parking lot of a Montgomery County sporting goods store. He now faces new charges of driving under the influence. The new charge violated the release he won on the road-rage incident. He’s now in the slammer.

On Tuesday he was joined by his older brother. Garrett was awaiting sentencing from charges resulting from a crash last January in which he ran a stop sign and plowed into another car, seriously injuring the woman driver. At the time, Garrett admitted he had used heroin earlier in the day. He was free while awaiting sentencing on Nov. 1.

But he had to undergo routine drug testing. On Tuesday he did not show up for his test, and a warrant was issued for his arrest. His attorney says it was a miscommunication.

For his part, Andy Reid is not communicating at all. He is declining comment on the situation. So is the team.

The media and public, of course, feel no such reservation. They are weighing in on the issue, as am I.

There are no shortages of opinion on this. Some believe Reid should step down, that it is ludicrous for him to be coaching the team while his family is in chaos.

Others believe his sons are grown men and should stand on their own in the incidents that have caused so much commotion for their family.

Complicating matters is the spotty performance by the Eagles so far this season, and some questionable moves by the coach that have led to the obvious questions of whether he is distracted by what is going on at home.

How can he not be? Should he step away?
That’s a question for Reid and the team to decide.

And all the rest of us to talk about.

There are undoubtedly a lot of perks that come with being the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. And of being his son.

This week we again learn there is a downside to that as well.
You have to feel for the Reids, both father and sons.

They are battling something a lot us face. But they’re doing it in the limelight of a voracious media.

I don’t claim to have the answer to what should happen here. I simply want to wish the best to a father and his two sons.

At this point I don’t really give a damn what happens to the team. I’m looking at three men who are hurting, and simply wish them the best in battling their demons.

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