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JASON TAYLOR: DANCING WITH THE STARS. WRITING FOR US

4/21/2008
Courtesy ABC

For Jason Taylor, this is a tale of two locker rooms. For instance, his pass-rushing friend Dwight Freeney of the Indianapolis Colts walked into Taylor's Dancing With The Stars dressing room Monday afternoon and noticed a pair of "tighty whitie'' underwear on a stool. Freeney picked them up, held them between his thumb and forefinger and howled, "Jason, don't tell me it's come to this!'' But that's the life of a dancer—everything they wear is lycra and tight. By now, Taylor is used to the abuse. Especially after he showed up unannounced in the Miami Dolphins locker room this week.

I can't believe Freeney was busting me on the tighty whities. It's just underwear, man. He wears a jock at work. So me wearing regular underwear is not that big a deal. He's seen worse, for sure.

Then again, you never know what the rest of the football world's thinking. Which is why it was pretty cool that I went back to Miami this week. I left L.A. last Tuesday night on the red eye, right after the elimination show, and brought my partner Edyta with me.

The first place we went was to my Learning Center, at the Holtz Children's Hospital in South Florida and to the reading room we have in the city of Miramar. All the kids and the staff there have been watching the show, and I guess the older kids were talking about how they wanted to dance with Edyta. I bet they did.

But as soon as we showed up, they kind of got quiet. So there was no dancing the Rumba down there. But they read to us and put on a show for us, and they all promised to dial 1-800-868-3402 and vote me back on the show.

The next night, Wednesday, I had a poker game at my place for some of the fellas. Dan Marino showed up, and let me tell you, he's a good guy. He didn't bust on me like Freeney did.

Dan just said, "You're doing a good job.'' He was happy for me, said to keep it up. We didn't talk a whole lot about dancing. We just kind of sat and bs'd, and then they whupped me in poker. I was one of the first ones out. I didn't have very much luck. But it was good to get some guys together and sit around and chill out a little bit. We talked a little football. Just about the draft. Like, 'Who you think they're going to draft?'

I have no idea on that. I guess the team's talking about Chris Long or Jake Long. One of those Long guys. Either an offensive linemen or a D-end. You can never have too many good ones. I mean, we can use a D-end, probably. We need to get pressure on the quarterback. I think we need both. There're a lot of pieces we need to get things in place in Miami. They need to make a wise decision and I'm sure they will.

The next day, after the poker, I went to the practice facility, just walked into the Dolphins locker room. The guys all said, "What the hell are you doing here?'' They thought I'd be in L.A. until football season started. So that was fun. They were excited to see me. They all asked dance questions. They watch the show Monday and go in Tuesday and then they all talk about it. Gives them something to do while they're working out.

I'm glad I can keep them entertained. I mean, I went up to my locker, and there were pictures of me dancing with Edyta taped up on it. Just pictures out of the newspaper. No bad pictures yet. I mean, they took the time to cut 'em out and hang 'em up. So that's a good thing.

And, no, I didn't bring Edyta in the locker room. Normally, I would've, but, you know the fellas. They were working out and changing clothes, so I figured I'd leave that alone.

Then I was back on a plane to L.A., back to this week's show. Edyta and I danced the Rumba, and, to be honest, I thought we did a better job this week than last week—even though our scores didn't reflect it. We got a 27 out of 30 after getting a 29 last week, but I still feel calmer now. I'm just not as nervous.

So, now that I'm back in L.A., I realize I don't miss Miami. Yeah, I've got friends back there that I miss and all. But I'm having a good time doing what I'm doing, and it's a nice change. Football will be there. It'll come and it'll be there. But right now, I'm digging this locker room.