"Do you know who I am? I play for the Falcons!"
Years ago, that would have been grounds for a beat-down from Atlanta police, along with enhanced sentencing under Georgia law. Now that our NFL team isn't an embarrassment, it's merely poor form by the Falcons' star defensive tackle. (Seriously, has "do you know who I am?" ever worked for anybody? Ask Gary Moeller how it worked for him at the Excalibur in Detroit.) Generally, I've found that screaming at the police isn't a very good way to get out of a ticket, but maybe Rod's experiences in Oakland and Philly lead him to a difference conclusion. I'm sure that he's carefully weighed the pros and cons and concluded that police officers usually respond to profane outbursts by saying "You're right. I am a motherf***er. Sorry to have bothered you. Please continue exceeding the speed limit and have a great evening."
That said, the article makes the conduct of the police sound a little fishy. Coleman produced a valid insurance card and then the driver was still issued a ticket for driving without insurance? How does that work?
All things considered, the local media will make a mountain out of this molehill, but Coleman's run-in doesn't matter. Yes, it's not good for a star player to be shouting at the cops, but he wasn't violent with them, so this isn't the end of the world. His judgment was questionable, but there was no real harm done, so life can go on. In the back of my mind, I'm thinking "this sort of hyper-aggressive guy is exactly the type of character I want on my defense."
And did the AJC writers miss the fact that the driver is Dennis Johnson, possibly the Dennis Johnson who was the #1 recruit in all of high school football in the late 90s, made the mistake of going to Kentucky to turn that program around, had 12 sacks as a junior in 2001, went pro, and has not been heard from again. If the Dennis Johnson driving wildly on 285 is indeed the Dennis Johnson of Kentucky football fame, then welcome back! Good to see you're still in the news!