New Locker Room Disease Metaphors for Sports Writers and Fans

We’ve all heard the term “locker room cancer” applied to a certain type of player. But it got me thinking – what other types of player-diseases are there in locker rooms, and what are the symptoms? Below is my list (with diagnostic assistance provided by Yahmule). As much as possible, I’ve tried to echo the symptoms of the disease with the behavior of the player. Feel free to add your own in the comments!

Locker room CANCER: player who causes locker room turmoil by expressing his aberrant personality way too freely. Example: Terrell Owens, Richie Incognito

Locker room ARTHRITIS: player who has been very good, but is going through a rough spot, so everyone has to be gentle about his mistakes and treat him with kid gloves. Example: Peyton Manning

Locker room HYPERTENSION: Long time dependable backup and/or special teams ace who suddenly starts making game-changing mistakes almost every game, causing the team to struggle and fans to contemplate their own mortality. Example: Andre Caldwell  

Locker room TYPE II DIABETES: older player who only wants to keep doing what they’ve always done only moreso, goddamit. Won’t abide any talk of change. Example: Kyle Orton

Locker room DANDRUFF: player who is average at best, but manages to stick to the roster somehow, to the annoyance of many fans. Example: Andre Caldwell

Locker room CHLAMYDIA: very popular player who, out of the blue, is caught on tape acting like a knucklehead: Example: Antonio Brown

Locker room MORBID OBESITY: player whose contract eats up a huge chunk of the team’s cap, causing the rest of the roster to weaken. Example: Ndamukong Suh

Locker room HERPES: very good player, but with a reputation for off-the-field problems. Team can’t get rid of him, but doesn’t really want to talk about him. Example: Lawrence Taylor, Tyreek Hill

Locker room DIARRHEA: player brought on with expectation of at least average performance, but is so terrible that he’s benched or released almost immediately. Example: Daryl Gardener, Brock Osweiler