The Elephant in the Room: No NFL Football Next Season?

BenContributor IFebruary 15, 2011

Rumors continue to swirl about Goodell/Smith behind the scenes romance.
Rumors continue to swirl about Goodell/Smith behind the scenes romance.Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


This is my favorite site to waste time with while I'm at work.  I spend a lot of time here and no one is addressing an issue that should be like a dead fish in the heating vent—foul and un-ignorable.

I'm not going to tell you I know all the details of the negotiation, I don't.  I'm a football fan.  I'm someone who loves the game and who loves theorizing on a game that can't possibly be predicted, which is exactly the reason it's so much fun. 

I'm someone who's watched football since I could walk.  I grew up about 15 minutes south of Green Bay and the first time I ever heard an F-bomb was from my mom after Don Majkowski threw an interception!  Bottom line is that I don't give a damn about the business of football!  I don't think I'm alone in the thought that football was a game before a business and the order should always be that—a game before a business!

Remember what happened to baseball in the '80s?  The players went on strike and they lost millions of fans—millions.  I grew up in the '80s and I still feel resentment to baseball and its players.  I doubt any of the players who were striking are still around, I don't care though— that memory is still there and I don't think it'll ever go away. 

What the National Football League has to risk isn't a lost season—they stand to lose an entire generation of fans and alienate the ones they already have.  Baseball WAS America's game, the '80s was when the NFL became bigger than the Major League Baseball isn't it?


To the Players Association

You represent a group of people who earn in the top five percent of the country to play a game.  I don't know what your issues are but it can't be that important.  You're inhibiting the players from playing, which is in my opinion, your only purpose for existing, to help the players do their thing.  Find a way to make this work—it's the only thing you should be thinking about right now and if we miss one second of the preseason games, you're all horrible failures at your job and probably life in general.


To the Owners

You don't have enough money?  You own a football team, jackasses!  You own a stable of generally overworked testosterone junkies whose most profitable assets are their 40 yard time. 

You work in a field that relies on the love and faith of your fans, who slowly give you thousands of dollars over a lifetime.  From the bars and hotels outside your stadiums to the cities they reside in, and the country as a whole—this is bigger than you.  We're doing our best to come out of a horrible recession and you guys are crying about money?  You're all worth millions!! 

I can only speak for myself but you come off as nothing but selfish.  You buy and sell athletes like cattle that make more than 10 people like me and you're complaining that you aren't making enough money??  GET OVER IT.


Recently the two sides couldn't even find it in themselves to sit down in the same room to have what they're calling "surface negotiations" and there are no more scheduled talks until after Mar. 4 when the work stoppage becomes a reality. 

You guys need to wake up and understand what you're risking here and realize that your situation redefines the meaning of stepping over a dollar to pick up a dime. 

If the NFL strikes I will lose complete respect for everyone involved, I don't care what the terms are.  If you don't want to play, get a job.  If you don't want to own a team, buy some apartment buildings or a car wash.  No one seems to realize the long-lasting effects a strike like this will have, all the people that will be out of work and everyone at home who just lost their excuse to be drunk on a Sunday afternoon. 

If the NFL misses even one second of game time I personally pledge to boycott anything the NFL makes money on.  From beer packaged in NFL marketing to team shirts or game tickets.  To me it's sickening that greed has blinded so many people who are probably otherwise intelligent rational people.  Get over yourselves, put on your big boy pants, borrow your balls from your wife and make a deal.  If you screw this up I think it's going to change the NFL in ways from which it will never recover. 

I wrote this to inspire debate and start a conversation.  I like to think that if we as fans shout loudly enough maybe the NFL will hear us and fix the game we all love.