PITTSBURGH PA - JANUARY 23: Ike Taylor #24 of the Pittsburgh Steelers attempts to intercept the ball intended for Santonio Holmes #10 of the New York Jets during the 2011 AFC Championship game at Heinz Field on January 23 2011 in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
It seems he's taking it very personally.
ESPN's Stephen A. Smith took Taylor to the shed on ESPN's First Take Friday, saying among other things, "I didn't know he was allowed back in the NFL after the way he performed against the Denver Broncos. A banishment is a worthy consideration."
Taylor fired back a multi-tweet response that indicates fairly clearly Taylor didn't appreciate what Smith said.
Give two you know what's this is your second time saying something I've held back from saying something in training camp.NOW I feel like— Ike Taylor (@Ike_SwagginU) September 7, 2012
You taking this too far, if you have a personal opinion about me tell that to me like a MAN. I have two sister, and mom my son and his mom— Ike Taylor (@Ike_SwagginU) September 7, 2012
Too hear that BS your talking put your selfish in my position you F "N with my Money, and I don't like that. Im a straight up no BS MAN.— Ike Taylor (@Ike_SwagginU) September 7, 2012
You have another opinion get at me or put a leash on your MOUTH...#SWURVE ...— Ike Taylor (@Ike_SwagginU) September 7, 2012
Taylor's own words confirmed he agreed with at least the spirit of what Smith was saying. He didn't play well.
However, to suggest he shouldn't respond to statements as melodramatic and inflammatory garbage like Smith spews on a daily basis isn't particularly realistic. If nothing else, it shows Taylor has pride in his game and his ability, and anyone who doesn't think he has the right to be bothered by it isn't thinking clearly.
In the end, if it serves as motivation for Taylor to go out and cast out some demons, then good for him. If Smith continues to talk after the game, and Taylor runs into him, then I'll enjoy writing about Smith's condition as updates get released from the medical center he'd be visiting.