With their often-tacky, self-aggrandizing owner-for-life, Jerry Jones, prominently leading the charge, the Dallas Cowboys landed Tuesday in the birthplace of tabloid journalism.
Talk about having a juicy story land on your doorstep.
Britain’s notorious tabloids, with their 4-inch headlines and their Page 3 girlie photos, were made for headline-grabbers like the Cowboys.
The Times of London may bring you the latest from No. 10 Downing Street, but if you really want to know what may — or may not — be going on with the Queen and her grandsons or, for that matter, with Nicki Minaj, you pick up a copy of The Sun, The Daily Star or the Daily Mirror.
Never miss a local story.
Tuesday’s big headline in the tabs — “When spider pranks go wrong” — was only topped by the latest on singer Minaj, who apparently performed some unscheduled paint and body work, with a baseball bat, on her boyfriend’s prized ride.
There remains some debate whether the average sports-loving local bloke is truly interested in suspending his fervor for the real footballers at Chelsea, Arsenal and West Ham to cheer on the over-kitted American gladiators. But the guess here is that the randy tabloids are going to have a hard time looking away this week from Owner Jones’ traveling medicine show.
Indeed, forget that spread this week on the Miss Reef 2015 calendar. As the Brits see it, Owner Jones — the real life J.R. — is in town. Hide the strippers.
Wait until the tabloids read over the Cowboys’ press clippings.
“Say again? The quarterback, the chap with the dimples, is playing with broken bones in his back?!!”
“Is he mad?”
Well, verily, sometimes quarterback Tony Romo is and sometimes he isn’t. Sometimes when he plays, Cowboys fans can hear the majestic strains of that Chariots of Fire music.
Other times, they hear the Benny Hill theme.
The tabloids’ NFL “beat men” should be aware that the Cowboys once claimed that Romo’s now-chronic back condition was just a cyst. Some of us personally think that he hurt his back playing his much-beloved golf, but OK, we’ll go for now with the sudden-lumbar-collapse-against-the-Redskins story.
There is also the curious saga of Cowboys backup running back Joseph Randle, who was recently arrested for walking out of an upscale shopping mall without paying for men’s cologne and underwear.
Randle told police he didn’t want to be bothered with taking the time to stop at the cash register. Later, however, we learned that he was just getting warmed up during his visit to the local stockade.
Facing a possible team suspension, Randle mused during his booking, “Dez [Bryant] didn’t miss no games for slapping his mama.”
He added, “Josh Brent, he’s still up in the locker room. He was driving drunk. That’s stupid.”
Both teammates were less than pleased with Randle’s jailhouse recollections. Some tense practice sessions followed.
The Cowboys contend that the issue is over but, frankly, this is low-hanging fruit to the London tabloids. Randle certainly will be thrown a query or two.
And how can they ignore Brent, whom Jones ludicrously included in the London travel party?
Brent was drunk on the night of Dec. 8, 2012, when he crashed and turned over his vehicle while driving a reported 134 mph in a 45 mph zone. Teammate Jerry Brown, a passenger in the car, was killed in the crash.
Brent did jail time, but Owner Jones wants him back in uniform as soon as the league — and the defensive lineman’s conditioning — will allow.
Since he won’t be playing Sunday at Wembley Stadium, Brent is free all week to do his two favorite things — drink and smoke weed. Prosecutors said he did both during his probation.
Have fun with that one, tabloids.
It’s already a slow week, though, in the local papers. The big story Tuesday was about a poor chap who was “seriously injured” while doing the family ironing.
Tomasz Paczkowski, tired of being nagged by his wife for not helping out more around the house, was trying to iron, drink a beer and watch boxing on TV, all at the same time.
“The phone rang,” the paper quoted Paczkowski, “and I pressed what I thought was the phone to my ear. The pain was incredible.”
Oh, these papers are going to love having the Cowboys in town.