Gerald Christian, the University of Louisville tight who was selected as this year’s final NFL draft pick by the Arizona Cardinals and therefore named Mr. Irrelevant 2015, survived his initial Irrelevant Week reception at the Balboa Bay Resort last Tuesday.
As Mr. Irrelevant, Christian and his family are spending the week in Newport Beach during the Foundation for the Undefeated’s 40th Irrelevant Week, an annual celebration that honors the last draft pick of the NFL. The Foundation for the Undefeated is an organization that promotes stories of perseverance.
On Tuesday, Christian and his family arrived at John Wayne Airport and transported in style to the Balboa Bay Resort, which is hosting the family for the duration of their stay. At 5:30 p.m., Christian and his family boarded a bot for a short harbor cruise. They returned to a greeting of sirens and water cannons from the Harbor Patrol, followed by a team of divers who surfaced holding a Welcome Mr. Irrelevant sign.
Christian was escorted off the boat by Miss California and Miss City of Orange, plus Mariner’s cheerleaders, to a beach party attended by local VIPs, dignitaries and media.
Once perched atop a lifeguard chair, Christian was given the keys to the city by Mayor Ed Selich.
“Gerald, keep that key in your car, and if you get pulled over, just show that to them,” quipped Mayor Selich.
Selich also noted that the city often gave proclamations for very special occasions.
“If you turn 100, you get one, if you’re a retired police dog you get one, so you can see they’re special proclamations,” joked Selich, who had a proclamation for Christian. “They have very official words like whereas and wherefore, but it gets kind of boring so I will paraphrase: This recognizes you were at the University of Louisville and selected by the Arizona Cardinals as the number 256 and final pick, that you are going to take part in the official Irrelevant Week activities, held by various organizations, culminating in then presentation of the coveted Lowsman Trophy. Therefore, I Edward Selich, declare this as Irrelevant Week XL in the City of Newport Beach, and I call on the residents to observe this week with inappropriate reverence that is consistent with Irrelevant Week.”
Next came a letter to Christian from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, which read in part, “If you can survive Irrelevant Week, you can survive everything the Cardinals will throw at you.”
Christian was given an official NFL watch, a large stuffed dog (a symbol of an underdog), a surfboard so he can take surfing lessons, an inflatable boat, baseball caps from various NFL teams, and other irrelevant presents.
Irrelevant week continues tonight, July 10, with the annual All-Star Banquet. Held at the Balboa Bay Resort, the evening features past and present celebrity athletes and previous Mr. Irrelevants, and a chance to roast the newest member of this exclusive Irrelevant club.
On Saturday the final event of Irrelevant Week – the annual Community Field Day and Unified Flag Football Game – is held 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Jim Scott Stadium at Estancia High School in Costa Mesa. Mr. Irrelevant and local football teams will demonstrate football drills, proper stretching and other football activities. Then, Mr. Irrelevant and other NFL players will compete in a flag football game with the Foundation’s charitable partner, Special Olympics Southern California.