Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio and NFL Network's Ian Rapoport have been going at it off and on over the past few months. Their latest battle was over free agent Brandon Browner who came to terms with the New England Patriots.
Earlier this week, Rapoport tweeted that Browner would sign with New England, but his agent who was trying to play hockey in his Colorado's men's league was having none of it. He called Florio to scoff at Rapoport and other "irresponsible journalists." It led Florio to blast Rapoport and relay this exchange with NFL Media.
Now that Browner has agreed on Friday (not Thursday) to a three-year deal (not two-year deal) with the Patriots, NFL Media is indeed claiming that Friday’s developments vindicate Thursday’s erroneous report.
“I guess we know who was right all along,” an NFL Media spokesperson told PFT via unsolicited email. “I hope that will be noted.”
I responded by calling that claim a crock of something other than chocolate, so I got this reply: “Ummmmm now that he is a Patriot it’s pretty clear [Ian Rapoport] was right all along.”
If Rapoport was “right all along,” there was a point on Friday where he conceded that he was wrong. Both Rapoport and Albert Breer reported that Browner’s visit to the Redskins, postponed from Thursday, “is back on for today.” If Rapoport was “right all along” that Browner had agreed to a two-year deal with the Patriots on Thursday, why would Rapoport and Breer report on Friday that Browner would be visiting the Redskins?
This isn't the first time Florio and Rapoport have squared off. In February, Rapoport and San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York debunked a Florio report that the team almost traded coach Jim Harbaugh to Cleveland.
Florio has been willing to go mano-a-mano with anyone he can access. There was the infamous dustup in January 2013 with CBS' Jason La Canfora. And he once got into a Twitter fight with the Jacksonville Jaguars mascot.
There's no doubt that Florio is a bulldog and is willing to square off with anyone at a moment's notice, but there is a saying about knowing when to pick your battles. Apparently Florio is one who doesn't like to let go once he gets started.
Update: Initially we had covered a Twitter exchange between Rapoport and a very clever fake Pro Football Talk account. Thankfully this feud is apparently good enough that it features both the real Florio and his internet impostors.