NFL Fans: It's Time For More Sportsmanship, Maturity and Unity

Derek OverlyContributor INovember 24, 2010

PITTSBURGH - NOVEMBER 21:  Head coach Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers argues with referees after a scrum took place in the middle of the field during the game against the Oakland Raiders on November 21, 2010 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

As an NFL fan, I love watching the game of football. As a Steeler fan, I particularly love watching physical football. One of the biggest aspects of the sport for us fans is the smack-talking with other teams fans. You can sit there and argue with your rivals fans over which team and players are better.

However, there is something alarming going on recently with NFL fans.

Ever since Richard Seymour punched Ben Roethlisberger, I've seen Steeler fans call for Roger Goodell's head and every other fan say they have no problem with it because of what Ben was accused of. I've seen some fans go as far as saying Ben got what he deserved. Let me speak on that for a second.

Grow Up.

This a sport of grown men. Adults. Yes, it is physical, but it is supposed to be friendly competition. Punching a player after the play is childish, and supporting it is even more childish.

What worries me the most is that grown men who claim to be mature, respectable adults are the ones supporting the punch. I'm sorry, but if you agree with what Seymour did, then I have absolutely no respect for you. Let me quote something for you:

When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 1 Corinthians 13:11

Now for those who say that Ben shouldn't have ran up to Seymour, yes I would agree, if such were the case. However, Ben was cheering his team while running to his own sidelines.

It's bad enough that Goodell is seemingly changing the sport right before our eyes, but now we as fans are making the sport even less enjoyable with all the childishness and disrespect. This is a man's sport. Act like a man.

After all, this is the time that as fans we most need to be united. With a potential lockout looming, fans need to ban together and show their support of the NFL and how much we love it to show the owners that a deal needs to get done, and show Goodell that he can't change the sport from what it was. From what we enjoy watching.

What makes it so bad is the inconsistency in the fines and suspensions from Goodell. This week two fines were given out. One of them for an unnecessary roughness during a play, the other for an unnecessary roughness after the play in which the player got ejected. The latter got off easier, with a $25,000 fine. Yet fans support this. Where's the consistency in protecting the players from the league? And where's the sportsmanship from the fans?

It's time the fans come together and unite to show more maturity and sportsmanship before the game is ruined for good.