Cowboys Player Sorry For Vick Autograph Request

IRVING (AP) – Cowboys running back Tashard Choice apologized via Twitter on Monday to anyone bothered by him asking Eagles quarterback Michael Vick for an autograph right after a loss.

He’ll get a chance to say more about it in an upcoming conversation with interim coach Jason Garrett.

Garrett wouldn’t say what he thought of the incident and repeatedly described Choice as a hardworking, passionate player. However, Garrett still plans to discuss it all with Choice.

“I certainly defend him,” Garrett said. “I know how hard guys compete in this league and how they battle against each other. I also know about the healthy respect that guys have for each other.”

As Vick was walking off the field, Choice approached with a white glove and a black marker. Choice can be seen explaining his request, handing over the marker and Vick happily providing his signature. Vick even rubbed the top of Choice’s head as they said goodbye, the two having known each other for several years.

NBC cameras were rolling and showed the whole thing to a national audience. Announcers chuckled as it happened, but didn’t comment. By Monday, it became a topic of debate coast-to-coast and all over the Internet.

As public opinion turned against him, Choice tweeted the following: “If its anybody that cares about winning and the d cowboys its me. I apologize to the people it was just an innocent jesture for my nephew.”

Choice was among the majority of players already gone when reporters were allowed in the locker room Monday. Those still around didn’t seem to care about it.

“I don’t think that it’s that big of a deal,” tight end Jason Witten said. “I don’t think any of us thought much about it.”

“That’s Tashard’s prerogative,” linebacker Keith Brooking said. “That did not affect the outcome of our game. I’m worried about things that are going to affect the outcome of our game and helping us win. Tashard getting an autograph from a player after a game doesn’t affect us losing.”

Vick and Choice knew each other from their days in Atlanta. Vick played for the Falcons while Choice played for Georgia Tech. Vick called the running back “a great guy.” He also said he’d never been asked to sign anything for another player on a field right after a game.

Cowboys defensive end Stephen Bowen said Choice’s mistake may have been doing it “in the public eye like that.”

“But just getting an autograph for a little guy? I don’t see anything wrong with that,” Bowen said. “The game was over. It wasn’t in the middle of the game. It’s blown out of proportion. I don’t see it as a big deal. I don’t know why you would be upset. What is there to be upset about?”

Choice is the Cowboys’ third-string running back and had only 14 carries through 11 games. He ran for 100 yards and a touchdown in a victory over Indianapolis — endearing himself to fans — but ran seven times for only 16 yards against Philadelphia. Dallas lost 30-27.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Jean

    So What?? Who Cares???

  • Coretta Jackson

    Why can’t her ask for an autograph? What he can’t ask because they lost the game? Is he suppose to be angry?

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  • Joi Baize-Wedding

    He should NOT have issued an apology – He did NOTHING wrong! If it was Romo getting one from Favre I doubt anyone would have said a thing.. same thing if we had won and he requested one. Just sore loser fans that are complaining. I think it was super cute, whether for a nephew or not. I loved seeing that he is still a humbled player – They are no longer fun to watch, to me, once they are so full of themselves that this would be beneath them.

  • W. G. Dews

    Tashard is such a great guy – talented – and just plain awesome. He is joyful and encouraging to everyone whether he is on the field or off. I love Tashard Choice and wish every player could be more like him.

    This will be a life lesson for Tashard – that with fame comes scrutiny, and sadly criticism as well. Too bad there are haters in this world. But Tashard will rise above it and he will move forward from this incident with grace and dignity.

    Personally, I think everyone who made a big deal out of this innocent exchange between two friends, Vick and Tashard, owes Tashard an apology.

  • Fab C

    Its an Autograph people, come on!!!! He did nothing WRONG!!!! People try getting on the ones who think they are to good to give theirs out. Vick was humble enough to do it…… We have bigger issues: Homelessness, Joblessness, People losing homes, Parents having to bring their kids home from College or telling them they can’t afford it, not even Jr. College!!!!! Pay not increasing but Insurance and everything else going up!!! up!!!! up!!!

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