View Photo Gallery: After eight seasons, Washington parts ways with popular tight end Chris Cooley. “It’s been awesome,” the longtime Redskin said.

There was a spirited debate on my radio show Tuesday over the Redskins’ release of Chris Cooley. I find it very odd how quickly some who actually consider themselves fans turn their backs on players who have done so much for their team.

Cooley maybe the greatest tight end to ever wear the burgundy and gold, yet on my show yesterday, caller after caller talked as if he was an object and not a person who gave his all for this team. It was if somehow that didn’t matter anymore. For five hours we took calls about it being a good move to get rid of Cooley: “It’s a business,” “He’s old and hurt,” etc.all of these reasons to justify his releasing.

Maybe it was a good move. However I disagree with the timing of it. The day before the last preseason game? That leaves Cooley no time and no real opportunity to catch on with another team.

It seems like the mentality that plagues this team has affected a segment of the fan base. It should not be just about business; it should be about business and family. I’m not saying there isn’t a business side because there most certainly is and sometimes tough decisions must be made. That’s fine. But there is a right way to do things and a wrong way, and either can become contagious. Just because a decision has to be made doesn’t mean there isn’t more than one way to handle it.

I can understand frustration from losing for so long, and I assume even winning teams have detractors who call themselves fans. I just was taken back by the total disregard for what Chris Cooley did as a Redskin.

Regardless of whether or not my opinion on the matter was correct, it was based off of my respect for the person. If Cooley’s situation was a money thing, it should’ve been handled long before now. If there was no place for him on this roster, he should’ve been released long before now. Sure it’s debatable and some arguments make sense; regardless it’s astonishing to me how nasty people can be over situations such as these. How can people be so hateful and spiteful about someone they cheered so hard for?

I always said the beauty of sports is that it brings out the best in people. Differences are set aside for the common goals of the team. My harsh reality now is knowing that it also brings out the worst in people.

I will never understand how people can build up so much malice for people they rooted for. It’s a shame if you ask me, but everyone is entitled to feel the way they want.

For my part, I appreciate what Chris Cooley did as a teammate and a Redskin, and it would’ve been nice to see this handled differently.