Carney has been dynamic this year and is one of a rare breed of players who can turn a match with his individual brilliance. Once installed at the Roosters as no.6, NSW fans started salivating and the thought of a halves pairing at club level of Carney/Pearce forming a strong combination going in to next year's Origin series.
Robbie Farah will feel unlucky coming so close again and Darius Boyd hasn't played a poor game for as long as fff can remember.
One thing that doesn't sit right with fff is this idea that it's a fabulous comeback story, that his effort this season is -to quote phil rothfield -"the biggest comeback in Rugby League history, bar none''.
Rothfield's inability to control his over zealous sense of 'history' in his articles has blinded him to his potentially irresponsible reporting, and this is another clasic example of what is wrong with this type of journalism.
It has certainly been an effort for Carney to dust himself off and back his own ability but these headlines -which were echeod throughout this week's Daily Telegraph- set a dangerous precedent for any kids/young adults gullible enough to buy in to them.These stories lead the reader to think that Carney's comeback this season is to be applauded and emulated. That he should be held up as a hero. This is only half true.
It is important to put Todd Carney's suberb achievement in to context.
Let's not kid ourselves, however low he sank, whatever challanges he faced and subsequently overcame, they were ultimately of his own making. Todd Carney has the sporting world at his feet, every oppportunity to play well -blessed with as much natural talent as anyone (do we have to say 'barring Greg Inglis' every time we say this?)- build a solid reputation as a marquee NRL player and tee-up media/coaching/mentoring jobs once he retires (He may still do this).
In his youth he decided to drink excessively, break laws -drink driving, high speed police chases etc- and generally act up, leading to his NRL contract being ripped up and getting himself banned from the NRL and his home town Goulburn.
Carney has done exceptionally well to get his on-field performances back to where they are. He has a lot of growing to do as a player and barring injury a long and hopefully successful representative career ahead of him.
Whether Carney qualifies for 'greatest comeback' or 'hero' status is questionable. In fff's opinion that would require something other than digging yourself out of a hole you dug for yourself through a series of immature and reckless off field incidents.
It would require a genuine effort from a player to overcome adversity both significant and beyond their control, much like the cases supposedly usurped in Rothfield's article of Meninga, Prince or 'Cement' Gillespie.
He went on to say Carney's effort surpassed that of the South Sydney's fan's underdog victory against News Ltd in their High Court battle to get their beloved club back in to the NRL. Tell him he's dreaming.
Todd Carney is to be commended for his stellar season, but we don't see a plausible reason why he should be commended any more than any player who has won the award in the past.
What does Carney's mum Leanne think? "I don't think he's done it hard, he's just stood his ground"