ANAHEIM — Most NFL players ride to special events in limos or in exotic sports cars. When the player is the dead-last pick in the draft, he rolls in the back of a vehicle more ideal for a soccer mom.
Welcome to the life of Tim Toone, Mr. Irrelevant.
There was no need to valet park the van for Toone at the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel and Spa on Friday. Toone jumped into the van with his parents, brother, two Mr. Irrelevant Week volunteers, and his agent.
Before the seven left the hotel for a Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim game, a couple of guests in the lobby rolled their eyes at the choice of transportation and then grinned. They weren't laughing at Toone's agent, Brett Tessler, who resembles comedian Dave Attell.
Tessler and Toone make for an interesting team, one has little hair and the other has blond dreadlocks. The two dined at the Knothole Club at Angel Stadium, raising the eyebrows of some cooks and waiters. If anyone found hair on their plate, they knew whom to blame.
After dinner, Tessler didn't stick around to watch Toone rake the infield dirt. Tessler left after the top half of the first inning, in hopes of catching a red-eye flight back to Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Toone made it down to the field and joined the grounds crew after the third inning. The public address announcer introduced Toone, the 255th pick of the Detroit Lions, to the crowd and it applauded. That is probably the only time this year any fans will root for a member of the Lions.
As for Toone's performance on the field, Paul Salata, the founder of Irrelevant Week, gave the wide receiver from Weber State a mixed review.
"He's a little slow, but he did a good job," said Salata, who sat next to his wife, Carolyn, and Toone's family in the field level section near the left-field line.
"It looked like he knew what he was doing."
Would Salata hire Toone to be his gardener?
"I wouldn't trust him," Salata said. "The other gardeners would be hugging him with that hair."
Toone once again caught flack for the dreads. During the three days of Irrelevant Week XXXV, some liked Toone's hair and some believed they were dreadful.
A fan from Rialto at the game thought Toone's hair was an act. Dennis Stevenson and his two friends heckled Toone.
Stevenson questioned Toone's hairdo.
"Is that how you wear it?" Stevenson asked.
"This?" Toone said as he pointed at his locks. "This is how I wear it."
"I thought they maybe made you do that in Newport Beach [to look] like a surfer dude or something," said Stevenson, who was not done taunting Toone.
Stevenson brought out his camera and asked his buddy and Toone to make out in a picture. Stevenson's motive was to show his colleagues the photo at work.
The mood changed after Stevenson, a die-hard Chicago Bears fan, learned that the Lions drafted Toone.
"Awwwwww!" Stevenson said. "It ain't as bad as the Packers [drafting you]. [If] the Packers [did], we'd be fighting.
"I can do Detroit Lions. You guys stink!"
The Lions aren't the only ones that appear desperate.
Toone visited the NFL Network studios in Culver City earlier in the day. During an interview, he signed a three-year contract on the air without reading it.
"I don't know what I just signed," Toone said on the NFL Network's Total Access program. "I don't know how much I'm getting paid. I don't know what my signing bonus is. But it's kind of irrelevant, right?"
Hopefully, Toone can now buy a nicer car than the van.