Bears receiver Brandon Marshall will stand out from the get-go Thursday against the Giants at Soldier Field. And it won’t be because of the double teams he’s facing or because of Marc Trestman’s plans to free him up.
Those all will come into play after his lime-green cleats catch everyone’s attention.
“The league’s going to hit me with a nice, little ($5,000) fine and I’m asking them to take my money,” Marshall said Tuesday. “The money I’m going to match and give it to a great foundation doing some work in the mental health community.”
Marshall had become the focus of some scrutiny by the media — some fair and some unfair — with his production slipping in the past three games and seemingly everyone expecting his frustrations to boil over.
On Tuesday, Marshall took to the podium in the Halas Hall media room to discuss nearly everything involving his current situation, while raising awareness for mental health issues. He wore a bright green sweater, passed out green ties and flyers with information and even held a trivia session with the attending media.
“I love it,” Marshall said of the eyes being on him. “I look at this amazing opportunity. It’s cool, I had 30 yards [receiving against the Saints] and that sucks, but all this attention around me gives me the opportunity to come up here and talk about 500 level (his apparel for mental health awareness) or The Tie Bar or what we’re doing to raise awareness.
“I love it. I embrace it. I know there’s going to be cameras on me, it just makes my platform that much bigger. I really embrace it. I truly believe that football is my platform not my purpose. I live life that way.”
Marshall said he’s no longer managing his borderline personality disorder, but past it. But he understands the perceptions some people have of him.
“The reason why I say that is the perception is I struggle, I’m on medication, I’m still in groups. It’s not that,” said Marshall, who confirmed that he was never on medication “I went through something, and it was tough. I went through a program and it was effective for me. So now I feel like I’m living a healthy normal life. That doesn’t mean I’m perfect. I don’t think I’ll ever be. But I have the tools I need to cope with my emotions.
“Really, it’s all about communication. It’s not bottling everything up. So that’s why I say I’m not a politician. I’m always going to tell the truth. It doesn’t matter if it’s behind closed doors or if it’s to you guys (the media). I’m going to say what’s on my mind. I’m not going to try to be disruptive, but I’m going to validate my own feelings.”
Marshall and his wife will be speaking about mental health at the Kennedy Forum in Boston on Oct. 23. Patrick Kennedy will be there.
“The who’s who in the mental health awareness will be there, so that’s going to be pretty cool,” Marshall said.
As for his expected fine, which is automatic per league uniform rules, Marshall is still deciding which organization he will donate the matching amount to.
Either way, he’s looking forward to playing the Giants.
“This is my kind of game,” Marshall said. “If they’re going to double me, that’s fine. We’ll go to our other guys. But if they’re not, man, they’re going to have to pay. That’s where I’m at — confident.”