Cornerback Aaron Ross apologized to the Jacksonville Jaguars and the team's fans on Friday after he received a negative reaction to a comment said during an interview on NFL Network program NFLAM, in which he said that his time in Jacksonville was "a nice paid vacation."
In a phone interview with Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN New York, Ross backed off the comments and explained his intentions when he said it:
"Jacksonville treated me and my wife with the utmost respect and I really appreciated what they did for me and did for us," Ross said by telephone on Friday afternoon. "The only reason I said the vacation thing is because it was such a short turnaround for me to (come) back home with the Giants, it felt like (being away on) a vacation. I definitely didn't mean any harm to Jacksonviile city or the fans or disrespect to the organization. I have the utmost respect for that organization."
"I really apologize if Jag nation took offense to it," he added. "I loved the opportunity that they gave me, they gave me a second chance to live my dream. They accepted me and my wife (Sanya Richards-Ross) with open arms and they were a fun crowd to be around and the organization was first class and treated us really nice."
Ultimately, Ross picked the wrong team to make the subject of a joke about "vacationing," only a year removed from some public backlash from Jaguars fans directed at former-defensive end Hugh Douglas for a similar comment.
At the end of the day, Ross was with the New York Giants for the first five seasons of his career and now returns to the Giants after one season in Jacksonville. He made a joke regarding those circumstances and made a mistake by using the word 'vacation' to describe them. A dumb one, but not a malicious one, as was apparently the case with Douglas, who was unapologetic and braggadocious about his high-paid failures in Jacksonville.