I had an interesting conversation with SCP readers John, Dave and Kevin this morning. Dave’s decided he’s done with the NFL. For him, the concussion issue was the last straw. He’s seeing players he watched and rooted for die and the league refuse to take responsibility. And so.. that’s it.
My first question was, “Why now?” Why draw the line at concussions when there is so much wrong with the NFL? Roger Goodell is essentially a crime boss who treats his players like commodities to be ridden until their no longer useful then tossed aside for good. So, the concussion issue is where Dave draws the line. Someone else may say the Ray Rice thing pushed them over the edge. That’s also fair. When it comes to picking something you hate about the NFL, there are hundreds of reasons to choose from.
Here are a couple more I have noticed over the past few weeks:
FEMALES: Last week, I was watching a Sports center segment, featuring Herm Edwards discussing the Ray Rice suspension. And Herm made an excellent point. Just because the NFL dropped the ball, it doesn’t mean the Ravens have to as well. Edwards told a story about his time as head coach of the Chiefs. His best player at the time, Larry Johnson, got into an altercation with a woman at a night club. And Herm, acting on his own, suspended Johnson for three games. The league eventually added a fourth game of its own, but Herm made his point. Unfortunately, he also uncovered a larger problem within the NFL world when he told the story. While describing Johnson’s transgression he said, “One of our players poured a drink on a female..”
A Female. Not a woman. Not a girl. Not a Young Lady. A FEMALE. Word choice matters. And throughout this entire discussion, players, coaches and pundits have talked about the Ray Rice situation as a case of violence against a female. Your cat is a female (even if your cat has a big ol’ kitty penis, it is a female. Deal with it.) Your wife, girlfriend, daughter, sister, etc are not. When you talk about women as if they are a completely different species, you open the door to treating them that way.
TONY DUNGY: Tony Dungy was a decent coach who is now a decent game analyst. Yet, somehow, the NFL has turned him into the ultimate arbiter of character. And that’s too bad. Because he’s not actually a very good guy. Dungy has been held up as the model of how to be father, though, somehow, he didn’t become this until after his teenage son committed suicide. Dungy is outspoken in his anti-gay attitudes, yet every time he utters the same hateful bullshit, he is given ample opportunity to “clarify” those remarks. Somehow, though, he always manages to dig himself deeper. And then, the NFL collective always responds the same way- well, he’s a christian man who is entitled to his own beliefs. Which is true. But at some point, he should lose his bully pulpit.
So, what’s the answer? There is no answer. Stop watching if you want. Though the NFL won’t notice and won’t care. The only one suffering will be you. Because its fun to watch football.
The very last line of this scene from Office Space pretty much sums up my feelings about it:
Why should I change? They’re the ones who suck.
Joe Sheehan, who I hate, writes about the legacy of Bud Selig, who I nothing (don’t love him, don’t hate him, don’t really have an opinion one way or the other.) Sheehan says baseball has changed since Selig took over 22 years ago. Obviously. So has, literally, every thing else in the world. Thanks, Joe, for pointing that out without adding any perspective or analysis.
So, here’s what I’m going to start doing- I’ll still review the articles I read, but instead of pointing out the articles I don’t, I’ll just include reviews of other things I’ve experienced throughout the week, whether they be new music, movies, tv, food or any other random crap.
Living in Dread by Ben Reiter
Reiter profiles Packers running back Eddy Lacy, who has the most fatalistic attitude of any professional athlete ever, He essentially says, I know I’m going to eventually sustain an injury which will end my career, I just hope it happens after I made a little money. It’s interesting to read on the same day the Giants former number 1 pick, David Wilson, was forced to retire after just two years because of a chronic spinal injury.
Too Much Of A Good Thing by Doug Farrar
And then there’s LeSean McCoy, who has the same thoughts as Lacy, but believes he will be protected by Chip Kelly’s crazy spread offense. I guess we’ll see.
High Value Target by Andrew Lawrence
A profile of Jimmy Graham, who came to football late in life and is now a star. I didn’t really know much of anything about the Saints tight end going in, so this was an article I really enjoyed.
Fantasy Stuff by Michael Beller
What makes Michael Beller a fantasy expert? What makes anyone a fantasy expert?
Hypnotic Eye by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
The new album came out Tuesday. It’s a great rock album but not a very good Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers album. What I’ve always loved about Tom Petty is how chilled out the music seems. It’s good relaxing music. Hypnotic Eye is a lot heavier than Petty’s been in the past. The first few songs sound more like Cream than the Heartbreakers and the end of the album sounds like ZZ Top. All of it is very good, just not archetypal Petty.
Voyager by Jenny Lewis
This album also came out on Tuesday. I enjoy Jenny Lewis and have 2 of her previous albums, but I never thought of her as a particularly significant artist. Then I started seeing great pre release reviews of Voyager on sites like Rolling Stone, Spin and The AV Club, which means Jenny Lewis may be breaking through into the mainstream. So, good luck to her. I hope it works out. This is a really good album, though its a pretty transparent description of where she is in life. Every song is about getting dumped in your late 30’s and realizing you’re old and baby-less. But it’s got a good beat and you can dance to it.