By Aaron Wilson
The Baltimore Sun
3:04 PM EDT, June 20, 2013
Bernard Pollard has maintained his enforcer mentality, and his aggressive, blunt-spoken stance toward football since leaving Baltimore.
The former Ravens strong safety has wasted no time establishing himself inside the Tennessee Titans' locker room, setting a tone by posting a note in his locker, according to the Tennessean that reads: "Goal -- Super Bowl. Mission -- Kill!!!"
This is no surprise to anyone who followed Pollard's steady stream of interviews when he was with the Ravens prior to being released in March after the Super Bowl and prior to the scheduled payment of a $500,000 roster bonus.
Pollard is a big hitter, and his game is intimidation. That's what he's trying to bring with him to Nashville since signing a one-year, $2 million contract to join an AFC South franchise that could use an injection of toughness.
Does Pollard actually want to kill anyone on the football field? Of course not. It's a figure of speech, albeit a politically incorrect one in the climate of today's safety-concious NFL.
“Our goal is the Super Bowl, and our mission is to kill,” Pollard told the Tennessean. “And if someone doesn’t like it, then who cares? I really couldn’t care less. It is not our responsibility to make anyone else happy, to please you, to care about you.
“Our responsibility is to protect LP Field, and our responsibility is to steal wins on the road. And our responsibility is to (beat you up) as a defense, and that’s what we’re going to do on every single play. You have to have that mentality because nobody cares about the Tennessee Titans. Nobody. So you have to take the respect."
Pollard doesn't concern himself with fines and potential suspensions, or being on good terms with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and the league office.
This is who Pollard is, and he makes no apologies for it.
And Pollard isn't taking down the note in the wake of receiving criticism for his stance.
“I don’t care what they have to say," he said. "If they feel like we’re going to carry guns and knives and try and stab people and try and kill them, shame on you. You are an idiot,. For us, when we say kill, we want to go out there and knock the (heck) out of people. We want to hit you. And for me, we’re going to help you up because I’m going to knock you back down. I have been at plenty of pee-wee football games where I have seen my son, my daughter, and you hear parents, you hear women, white, black, Hispanic, Chinese, Japanese, telling their sons, “Kill them! Telling their daughters, kill them!”
“Do I believe they mean kill them? Literally kill them? No. So if you have never played this game before and you want to take that and run with it, go ahead. Shame on you. You’re a fool. But for us, that is just the mentality you have to have, and that’s not going to change.”
Pollard wasn't done, also taking aim at Goodell.
“I really don’t care what the commissioner is doing," Pollard said. "I don’t think he has ever played football. He has never played in the National Football League, and he has never walked in my shoes. And I haven’t walked in his, either,’’ Pollard said. “I don’t know what he has to say about me, and to be perfectly honest, I don’t care what he has to say about me. I know that we have to have that mentality to play the game. You have to be (ticked) off, and you have to do some things to (tick) other people off. … If you don’t like that, I’m sorry for you. We’re not going to change, and we’re not going to apologize.
"My job is to play football. My job is not to talk to the commissioner. I like the way things have gone in my career. I fly under the radar and don’t get in trouble. You are not going to hear about you and you are not going to see me. But I promise you this: On game day, you are going to hear my name and you are going to hear my helmet popping.”
Not to mention, his mouth moving a mile a minute!