I could care less about what his beliefs are. I am more concerned at the fact I think he'd be a better G then a T. RT was a huge issue going into the draft I hope him or Winters can really step it up and take the reins there. For all the talk of Winters playing G I'd still much rather see him fill a bigger need at RT. Which I think he would be better suited for then anyone else on the roster right now.
Oday Aboushi should be in the process of preparing for his rookie season with the New York Jets. Instead, the fifth-round draft pick is answering accusations about his political beliefs.
The Brooklyn-born Aboushi is one of a handful of Palestinian-Americans to be drafted by an NFL team. This week, FrontPage Magazine, a conservative political website, published a report that portrayed Aboushi as a Muslim extremist who uses social media to promote an anti-Semitic agenda.
The magazine's web post gained traction when other media outlets picked up on the report."My family's been just as shocked by the lies and smears as I've been," Aboushi said Friday in a phone interview with the New York Post. "I don't think I'm radical at all. I have never done any radical behavior. For the writer to come out and claim that just builds lies on top of the lies."
The Anti-Defamation League released a statement Friday dismissing the FrontPage Magazine report as "unfair and farfetched."
"There's a lot of exaggeration and hyperbole in all the talk about Jets lineman Oday Aboushi," an excerpt from the statement read. "Absolutely nothing in the public record suggests that Aboushi is anything other than a young American athlete who takes pride in his Palestinian heritage."
The Jets released their own statement on the matter.
"The New York Jets strongly believe in diversity, inclusion and tolerance of others," the statement read. "We also encourage all of our employees to use good judgment when exercising their rights to freedom of expression and speech to be certain that they are constructive and respectful."According to the Post, the Jets said they have given "no thought" to releasing Aboushi, who is scheduled to report to training camp with the rest of the team's rookie players on July 22.
"My feelings are very fair -- I wish both sides (in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict) would come to a peaceful agreement and both live in peace," Aboushi said. "I want to see them live together in harmony and enjoy the land instead of focusing on conflict with each other."
Many prospective college students decide which school they want to attend based on quite a few factors — location, size of the student body, academic reputation, quality of the sports teams, and the list goes on.
When Oday Aboushi was looking for where he wished to spend his four years as a student-athlete, he considered a different factor before deciding on the University of Virginia: D’Brickashaw Ferguson.“He’s one of the reasons why I chose the school,” the fifth-round rookie tackle said, "sending an offensive tackle like Brick to the NFL, and his being one of the best out there.”The two are also native New Yorkers, with Aboushi hailing from Brooklyn and Ferguson from Freeport on Long Island.Ferguson and Aboushi were never teammates at Virginia, as Ferguson entered the draft in 2006, three years before Aboushi started his own tenure at UVa. Now that they are Jets teammates, though, Oday loves how easy it is to approach his teammate when looking for guidance, describing the three-time Pro Bowler as "a Class-A guy.”“He’s always there if you need to ask a question or if you need some help,” he said. “Being as open as he is to the younger guys, and even to the older guys and the coaches, definitely puts a nice spin on things.”
Of course, athletes can only learn so much before getting out onto the field and allowing their innate physical ability to do the rest.For the 6’5”, 308-pound Aboushi, adjusting to the speed of the game has been the most difficult transition from the ACC to the NFL.And it’s not just the physical speed of opposing pass rushers.“It’s everything,” he said. “Recognizing coverages faster and defensive fronts faster, going through your assignments quicker, adjustments on the fly even when the ball is snapped.”With the practice and a daily dose of reps in training camp, Oday Aboushi feels like things have “been going really well.” Now he, like so many of his teammates, is ready to start perfecting his craft against guys not wearing green.“All this hard work, starting with OTAs to training camp right now, it gets you excited,” he said. “You just want to see a different color out there and do what you’re taught and do what you’ve been working at the whole time.”
One thing Oday has not been working on is playing an O-line position other than tackle, but he’s ready for that challenge if and when the coaches ask it of him.“In the NFL, you have to be prepared to start all positions on the offensive line,” he said, “so I’m open to learning guard.”There’s one thing that Oday Aboushi has been doing and will continue to do, and it’s something that he’s learned on his own, without the help of Ferguson or any coach he’s ever played under.“The only thing you can ask for is to bust your butt and work as hard as you can,” he said, “so that’s what I’m going to do.”