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Portis admits he asked for Sellers to be benched


(By Toni L. Sandys - TWP)


One of the nearly forgotten fun-time happy-face episodes of the past Redskins season involved the locker-room infighting between Clinton Portis and Mike Sellers. This was many months before Portis and Jason Campbell exchanged barbs in the press. And this episode emerged mostly under the cover of anonymous sources, who told the press that the two men had a conflict after Portis asked coaches to bench Sellers during a game.

Even when Sellers later defended his play, he did so without mentioning Portis. And Jim Zorn explained that the two guys loved each other, and that any conflict did not result from issues with Sellers's blocking.

But Portis--love him or hate him--never turns that honest button off, and so when the guys on the NFL Network asked him point blank about his relationship with Sellers, the story finally came out, attached to his name, without the use of sources. And--somewhat amazingly--Portis admitted that yes, indeed, he went to coaches during a game and asked for Sellers to be benched.

"The Mike Sellers incident was blown out as well," Portis began. "Mike Sellers came to me and said, 'Get on guys.' You know, that was his message to me. He came to me, he said 'Man, you need to be more of a vocal leader. Get on guys, tell guys to get it together.'

"I said, Mike, no, that's not me. For three weeks in a row, I said Mike, that's not me, I don't want to get into any confrontation with anybody. He said, 'From me to anybody else, if you feel like somebody's lacking, let them know.'

"We got into the game, I felt like Mike was lacking," Portis continued, as the other set members tittered in disbelief. "I let Mike know that he was lacking. Listen, that's what he asked me to do, so I just asked him, I told him, I said Mike, c'mon baby, I need you. We went out, it happened again. Therefore I came to the sideline and I told them, I was like I just didn't want a fullback in front of me, put me in one-back.

"And then they was like, 'Well, we want to run our game plan for two backs.' I said put Todd Yoder in front of me and run downhill. All of the sudden, Mike take that and 'Whoooo, you trying to get me benched and you throwing me under the bus.' You just asked me to come tell you if I had a problem. I told you in the game. It's not like I didn't tell Mike. I told him during the game, 'C'mon Mike, I need you.' And then I get to the sideline and it's like blown out. I guess a coach or somebody went back and told him, 'Oh, Clinton wanted you out of the game,' and then Mike addressed the situation."

I don't know, do NFL players regularly approach coaches during games and ask for players one year removed from the Pro Bowl to be benched? Maybe they do. But the other fellas on the NFL Network set seemed a bit taken aback.

"That might be a problem if I come to the set tomorrow and say I don't want to work with Warren Sapp, put Sapp on the bench and let me just sit right here with Marshall [Faulk]," Deion Sanders said. "That might be a problem."

"It gonna be a problem," Sapp agreed. "It gonna be a little bit. It gonna be a little bit."

Anyhow, at least the story is officially out. And give Portis credit; he said he doesn't speak anonymously to the press, and he said he'll tell you what's on his mind, and he seems to carry out that threat regularly.

(Thanks to The Skins Blog for posting the video.)

By Dan Steinberg  |  February 6, 2010; 3:25 PM ET
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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Comments

O.K. And CP can help Shanahan's team HOW?

Posted by: boothintexas | February 6, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

is this guy crazy, A new coach who traded him is the coach and he is still talking. He should not say nothing and work hard.

Posted by: tjzukoski | February 6, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Fact is Sellers WAS lacking. Portis didn't go about it the best way but he was right that Sellers was hurting the team.

Posted by: 4blasphemy | February 6, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Portis is an %&^$$*&, learn to speak English. Does he really have a college education?.

Posted by: zosodave | February 6, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

More proof that Portis is a great teammate, and truly a team-first player. [End sarcasm.]

I am sure the few remaining (but tenacious!) Portis slurpers out there will spin this incident as somehow being an example of his greatness. Good luck with that!

Bye bye, Portis. [Fork stuck into "Sheriff Gonna Gitchya's" costume.]

Posted by: hithere1 | February 6, 2010 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, all the blocking in the world can't improve lame, selfish and childish!

Posted by: iubiquity | February 6, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

His mouth averages 5 YPC.

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | February 6, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

can't wait for the day that CP is gone..congrats to Russ Grimm for finally making it in to the HOF!

Posted by: ralston21 | February 6, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

My GOD u fans are SO STUPID! WHY HATE ON PORTIS WHEN ALL HE DOES IS TELL THE TRUTH! WE NEED THAT! YOU PEOPLE ON HERE ARE BORN LOSERS!

Posted by: 50midgets | February 6, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

It was obvious that sellers blew a number of plays. It doesn`t matter that he was a year removed from the pro bowl. However..to be fair, CP did not do much either. With a lesser O line, Gather ran better than Portis did earlier in the year.
Get rid of both of them!!

Posted by: blazerguy234 | February 6, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

See....Dion /sanders and Warren Sapp can sit on their high horse now they don't play the game....but the truth of the matter is Sellers was lacking....and we, which includes Clinton Portis, are trying to win games and score TDs....

Posted by: 4thFloor | February 6, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Maybe if Portis was not falling down on the first sign of a hit, the Sellers could do a better job.

Posted by: fearturtle44 | February 6, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

This Portis interview/story (video) was on the NFL Network 2 days ago..and discussed ad nauseum by posters on RI yesterday, including video links...... yawn.
Must suk to be scooped in your own paper.

Whats really missed is the inherent evil in this manipulation by Clinton Portis.

Sellers rightly calls him out for 3 games in a row... And Clinton exacts revenge by calling him ..and using his (I hang out with Snyder in the offseason "aura") gets Sellers benched.
Pure evil... Send this guy, who speaks of himself in 3rd person (see video), packing.. Its no coincidence the team morale and production improved when Portis was on IR.

Posted by: SkinsneedaGM | February 6, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

The truth is that Portis is also "lacking". He had already blamed the offensive line for being "lacking" the previous year, and he also called out Jason Campbell for being a "lacker" at the end of the season, so why is this not a surprise to anyone that he did call for Seller to be benched for being "lacking". It takes one to know one on that team.

Posted by: JohnWWW | February 6, 2010 7:43 PM | Report abuse

@SkinsneedaGM

It was new to me, and it was interesting to me. Those are my general blogging guidelines. Friday night was Caps and Wizards and snowstorm for me, and so I had missed this in RI comments. I don't think this, or that, counts as a "scoop," when the dude was on TV talking. Even if I had blogged about it 10 seconds after he finished, it wouldn't be a "scoop."

But it was then, and it remains now, an interesting story that we should have on our site.

Posted by: DanSteinberg1 | February 6, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Forget about the Portis issue for a sec, I think it's hilarious that Deion would make a joke about Sapp and him, and BOOM, cause of "accusations"; Sapp is now off of ESPN's coverage of the Superbowl...go fig..

Posted by: SCPEGLEG | February 6, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

It must be said again: CP, JUST GO AWAY. You are a cancer and the disease is terminal to the patient/Redskins unless you are cut out.

Posted by: goodbye26 | February 6, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

@SkinsneedaGM

It was new to me, and it was interesting to me. Those are my general blogging guidelines. Friday night was Caps and Wizards and snowstorm for me, and so I had missed this in RI comments. I don't think this, or that, counts as a "scoop," when the dude was on TV talking. Even if I had blogged about it 10 seconds after he finished, it wouldn't be a "scoop."

But it was then, and it remains now, an interesting story that we should have on our site.

Posted by: DanSteinberg1 | February 6, 2010 8:12 PM
=====================================
my bad.. I didnt see the props given to the RI bloggers..
Yes, the trickle down dysfunction from FO to the locker room is interesting.. thanks for covering...

Posted by: SkinsneedaGM | February 6, 2010 9:12 PM | Report abuse

please shanny, get rid of both of them...one is an idiot and selfish, and the other is way overrated

Posted by: miked4 | February 6, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

There is nothing this man adds on the field that can offset what having him around costs the morale of the team. We have wasted money on so many things over the years that were worth nothing, here is a situation where wasting a little money by cutting or trading him for nothing gets you a tangible return. Since Clinton is a Snyder favorite and is clearly an unpopular cancer, if he does not go it will be a clear sign that Allen and Shanahan are not in charge. I think that Betts and Ganther will be a serviceable one two punch next year assuming an upgraded line.

Posted by: Solon | February 6, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Portis is the classic clubhouse lawyer that tears a team apart. Unfortunately the owner allowed him to get away w/ it..

Posted by: randysbailin | February 6, 2010 11:43 PM | Report abuse

Sellers was dogging it. Portis isn't the best because his line isn't adequate. Give him a good line and he is an elite RB. An above average runner, a very good receiver, and maybe the best blocking halfback in the NFL. Now get him a line and more practice time and with some good health all you geniuses will see a 1500 yard season. He will always be a head case. Don't run a good player out of town because of politics and poor media coverage.

Posted by: 1bmffwb | February 7, 2010 12:35 AM | Report abuse

Portis WAS an "elite" RB when he was in a good system in Denver.

He's simply past it now. He can't do anything a decent draft pick can't do.

Posted by: alecw81 | February 7, 2010 12:47 AM | Report abuse

Both of them stunk up the joint consistently in 09.

Please.

They are both liabilities, actually.

Posted by: Thinker_ | February 7, 2010 4:44 AM | Report abuse

My question is does this make Mike Sellers want to block for him any harder...Campbell got sacked ...well alot...but he NEVER threw anyteam mate under the bus. Now towards the end of the season we saw him got peaved on camera a couple times but he knew he had a make shift line. That's what a team leader is and that is who command respect. CP is no leader and who wants a premadonna on the field that isnt a leader???

Posted by: SkinzFan4lyfe | February 7, 2010 8:08 AM | Report abuse

CP always says what happens in the locker room or between teammates should stay that way. A simple way to aviod any conflict if they did ask would have been to say...What happened is what happened and we are just looking forward to moving in the right direction. Yet he has no common sense (or a sense proper english as someone mentioned) and he tries to say "YEA I did it , but atleast I was man enough to tell him to his face". No you were man enough to run to Dan Snyder. To bad the caps owner can't buy all the franchises he really turned them into winners and made Washington a place where people actually wanted to come and make a difference not just collect a pay check !!!

Posted by: SkinzFan4lyfe | February 7, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

CP apparently enjoys the microphone. Maybe Portis would be more watchable if he used one of his other characters while he interviews, or simply recreate his car commercial ad. THAT was funny. Portis being Portis is just annoying.

Posted by: bfjam | February 7, 2010 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Wow, Portis actually went to college? It's great to know that folks who can't speak love to talk and reporters love to give them the opportunity.

Posted by: gary_paytonrules | February 7, 2010 8:51 AM | Report abuse

This is hysterical. Portis has the IQ of a grape. When I was a kid I stole some empty bottles and returned them for nickels. When confronted I denied it emphatically over and over. BUT then, a parent of one of the other kids involved said' " Ok, but lets say you did do this- how would you pull it off?" I slid down the slippery slope of telling them exactly what we did realizing as I said my last few words that I wasn't very smart. Portis, as an adult gets walked down the same "no brain" path. LOL. You know he didn't want to admit that he was 1- a wimp, I cant call people out, 2- a baby, it isn't working coachy bench the other guy, and 3- a mental midget. Thank God for football and talent, b/c Portis would be a deadbeat dad somewhere working under the table folding jeans for a sweat shop. You can't destroy the English language like that and have a brain. The real controversy has to be in the transcripts at MIAMI. Bye Bye Portis.

Posted by: robjway1 | February 7, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Portis made "a business decision" last year and made sure he didn't come back to a losing team with a coach he didn't respect. Shanahan comes, and all of a sudden he's got a second wind. Portis is a quitter. I know he's injured, but he's cried wolf so many times to get out of practice, he doesn't get the benefit of the doubt. Remember how he's get the team to within the 5 yard line and the PULL HIMSELF OUT of the game. Al Saunders remarked at the time, "I've never seen in my whole career a back of that caliber pull himself of a game in the red zone with the game on the line." Quitter.

Posted by: DCUnited2 | February 7, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

We should pay attention to Seller's Pro Bowl accomplishments any more than we pay attention to Portis' phenomenal past achievements. It's one game at a time, and in that particular game, Mike was making lots of mistakes. Not all his fault, of course; some of those offensive plays were just plain bad calls.

I'm going to chalk this up to a bad season that everybody should try to forget (including Portis and Sellers). Let's get to camp and see who Mike and Kurt Shanahan think is a good player.And clean house of the rest.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 7, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

By the way, that incident aside, Clinton shows signs of being a crispy critter. Shawn Alexander disease. So does LaDainian Tomlinson. Most NFL coaches feel a sense of loyalty to their prime backs, when they've been as productive as those guys have. But Shanahan has a chance to start over, and maybe he should take advantage of it, despite the criticism he'll take if he lets Portis go.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 7, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

What's the postage from here to Buffalo? Ship him out of here and let his winning ways mesh with T.O.'s winning ways so they can win there.

And all their apologist fans can follow them there too...I'll suffer along with Ganther running hard, blocking/blitz pickup, and catching out of the backfield and not falling down or running up the backs of his lineman and certainly not causing locker room rifts every other day.

This act has run its course

Posted by: kahlua87 | February 7, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

"Since Clinton is a Snyder favorite and is clearly an unpopular cancer, if he does not go it will be a clear sign that Allen and Shanahan are not in charge. I think that Betts and Ganther will be a serviceable one two punch next year assuming an upgraded line."

Posted by: Solon | February 6, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Rather, "if he does not go, it will be a clear sign that Snyther have too much invested in him."

Posted by: abxinc | February 7, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

it shows how pathetic the skins are other teams are talking about championships we get to talk about one player asking for another player to be taken oput of a game total pathetic. That is th state of ths kins these days a total joke bunch of rich lazy bums. I hope they never win again until Snyder sells the team for $100 billion and leaves town. Shanadhan is not th answer he came here to get paid just like everyone elese

Posted by: jmfaruki | February 7, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Portis is an %&^$$*&, learn to speak English. Does he really have a college education?.

Posted by: zosodave | February 6, 2010 4:59 PM

If you consider "da U" a REAL college...

Posted by: harrypoopers | February 7, 2010 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Some people want to give credit to Portis for telling it like he sees it.

However Portis should not even be on the team - he has been past his prime for years now. His contract is a joke for the production he brings.

Just imitating my role model CP - only in correct English.

Sarcasm intended.

Posted by: oldnova | February 7, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Clinton Portis is an illiterate ass who refuses to practice. Hopefully we have seen the last of him.

Posted by: lacy4 | February 7, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Its no coincidence the team morale and production improved when Portis was on IR.
Posted by: SkinsneedaGM | February 6, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

AMEN.

Posted by: BMACattack | February 7, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

So what, this sort of thing happens all the time, especially during a train wreck of a season. Sack up.

Posted by: BrooklynSkins | February 7, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Sellers was dogging it. Portis isn't the best because his line isn't adequate. Give him a good line and he is an elite RB. An above average runner, a very good receiver, and maybe the best blocking halfback in the NFL. Now get him a line and more practice time and with some good health all you geniuses will see a 1500 yard season. He will always be a head case. Don't run a good player out of town because of politics and poor media coverage.

Posted by: 1bmffwb | February 7, 2010 12:35 AM

Translation: SLLUUURRRRRRRRRP!

Posted by: hithere1 | February 7, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

well portis is a whiny player, we know this. he does tend to blame everyone around him, we know this too. but the fact of the matter is, if you actually watched the game the announcers them self slowed replays and circled mike sellers and said he was making the wrong blocks. as much as you might hate portis i guarantee you he is so self absorbed that he can not stand to not look good

Posted by: slim8109 | February 10, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

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