It’s been almost 15 years since the definitely-not-NFL-but-the-highest-level-of-pro-football players strike, and we know that most of you are wondering what happened to the replacement players of your beloved Washington Sentinels. Luckily, we here at Dudefest.com have been following their careers since their final game against the Dallas Not-Cowboys. Buckle up for an emotional thrill ride, because they’ve all moved on to bigger (read: smaller) and better (read: deader) things.
Shane Falco (QB):
As Falco left the field after leading the Sentinels to an improbable victory over the Ropers, coach McGinty was quoted saying, “When the replacement players... left the stadium that day, there was no... parade, no endorsement deals... Just a locker to be cleaned out, and a ride home to catch”. Except that there were both endorsement deals and victory parades waiting for Shane Falco, literally right outside of the stadium. In fact, he signed with the Los Angeles Megalodons before he even made it out of the locker room. Oh, and they have interns that clean out the lockers, that’s not players’ work. And Falco drove himself to the game.
After starting for the Megs for two seasons (7-7 and 9-5 with a first round playoff loss, respectively), Falco signed with the San Antonio Sandstorm. He started for one injury-plagued season and retired after signing a ceremonial one-day contract with the Sentinels. He spends his days scraping barnacles off of his houseboat and living off the lucrative sponsorship deal he signed immediately after his final game with Washington. Damn, McGinty got that completely wrong, huh?
Nigel Gruff (K):
Like Michael Jordan, Gruff was a professional athlete with a crippling gambling addiction. The similarities end there, because Jordan is still alive and Gruff was murdered by those mobsters that were going to “take [his] pub” unless he missed that last-second field goal. Spoiler alert: since the Sentinels won, and it was obviously his fault for not missing the kick like they clearly instructed him, they beat him to death in the parking lot after the game. The crime went unsolved because Dallas fans are assholes.
Walter Cochran (RB):
God just did not want this guy to play pro football. You’d think a preacher would have taken an obvious sign from on high, but no, he had to tempt fate. Well, after suffering the same brutal knee injury for the second time, he had his leg repaired (by a doctor, not the power of prayer) and went back to his church. Finally learning his lesson, he remains there, preaching the dangers of playing games with the Lord.
Earl "Ray Smith" Wilkinson (CB):
After the game, “Smith”/Wilkinson went back to jail and finished his sentence. He was released without incident and went on to work in a Foot Locker, where he is the Assistant Store Manager. He also officiates pee wee football games on weekends. To this day, nobody other than his teammates knows he ever played for the Sentinels.
Daniel "Danny" Bateman (LB):
After the season, Danny Bateman went right back to his job with the Washington, D.C. SWAT team. Two months later, one of his trademark rage episodes resulted in five seriously injured police officers and the deaths of two suspects. The trial was swift due in part to the testimony from his coworkers (the guys all agreed it was “Classic Danny”) and he is currently serving 20 years in a federal penitentiary, location undisclosed.
Jumbo Fumiko (OT):
Fumiko relocated to San Francisco and used his fifteen minutes of relative fame (who the hell remembers linemen, anyway?) to promote his brand new restaurant, Jumbo’s Shrimp Rolls. He refuses to serve whole eggs to customers who play in a nationally televised sporting event that day.
Jamal Abdul Jackson (G)/André "Action" Jackson (G):
Noticing the natural ability that linemen have for moving cars while with the Replacements, the brothers decided to go back into retirement and open up a used car dealership. They live in Peoria, IL and still run the “This Hand Jackson Pre-Owned Automobile Emporium”. They star in their own shitty commercials that make lame football puns, usually centered around the multiple meanings of the word “drive”.
Clifford Franklin (WR):
Orlando Franklin slipped into obscurity following the 1999-2000 replacement season, until 2012, when a local news story featuring Franklin was picked up nationally. Franklin was lauded as a hero when he broke the fall of a baby plummeting from a fiery fourth floor window by trying to catch it. The baby only suffered minor fractures to the skull and body.
Brian Murphy (TE):
After Murphy’s success in his time with the replacement players, he declined to continue to play in a league that snubbed him due to his disability. He moved on to become a bestselling author for his book about his experiences, Deaf Defying, and a very popular motivational speaker that has trouble taking questions from the audience.
Annabelle Farrell (cheerleader):
Farrell sold her bar and moved with Falco to Los Angeles. Their sex tape went viral days before Falco’s playoff loss. The relationship fell apart and she moved back to Washington, working as a waitress for the bar’s new owner. Her notoriety due to the video faded rapidly and she only hears a reference to it about once per year.
Jimmy McGinty (HC):
Refusing to remain with the team after the end of the strike due to clashes with the regular players, McGinty spent the playoffs and ensuing offseason interviewing with other teams for Head Coach positions. He ended up settling for a role as Offensive Coordinator with the Oklahoma City Doves, where he stayed for three seasons. He met with limited success, finishing with a 15-27 record overall, after which he was fired unceremoniously and never worked in the league again. He faded into obscurity until his death in 2013 when ESPN released 30 FOR 30: ADVANCED REPLACEMENT, which was the lowest-rated 30 FOR 30 production ever and led to the eventual cancellation of the series.
Eddie Martel (QB):
Martel returned to guide the actual Sentinels (you know, the professional football player ones, not the stockboy-and-convict ones) through the playoffs and onto the... we don’t know, Über Bowl? The Sentinels won 55-6 and Martel retired as one of the greatest QBs to ever play the game. He is currently a commentator on NBC and still makes millions of dollars per year, and remains the largest douchebag on the planet. He is still a better broadcaster (and person) than Joe Buck.
The other like, 40 people you need to fill a roster (various):
Pat Holland has trouble distinguishing fiction from reality.
Sue Donem once accidentally ate an entire bowl of wax fruit.