Heads Up: 4 Reasons Why The NFL Will Never Be The Same

May 16, 2012No Comments

Warner is wary of his kids stepping onto the football field.

It’s been a wild off season so far. Bounties, lawsuits, and suicides have made us look at the game we love so dearly in a different light. The talk of concussions and/or head related injuries changing the game is already the elephant in the room when it comes to player safety. However, there are a lot more reasons more why the NFL will be different in the next decade and head injuries is just a small part of that. Let’s talk about four major reasons why the NFL will never be the same.

  • The curtain has been peeled back.
    • The whole bounty scandal playing out in public view certainly raised more than a few eyebrows from the average fan. For years people have been able to enjoy the game and not really think about the violent nature of what really goes on except for a few hours on Sundays and Mondays. I believe the aftermath of the bounty scandal will have a far reaching affect that will change the way this and future generations look at the game. Sure, the game will still be popular among hardcore fans but casual fans will start to take a closer look at the barbaric nature of the game and parents of children in youth football might just be a little more cautious about letting their children become involved in the violent culture that is permeated in football locker rooms. This isn’t going affect drastically the NFL’s popularity in the next year or two but it could lead to a long term ripple affect that affects future generations of fans and players.
  • Current and Former Players are Talking.
    • Certainly, Kurt Warner has made headlines by saying he is not in favor of his kids playing football. He has been criticized by several former and current NFL players, but the point remains that this is new ground. The NFL is full of men who have been broken both in body and mind and many have suffered silently accepting their fate as part of the cost of playing such a violent, brutal sport. I think Warner’s honesty speaks volumes because I don’t believe he is the only former or current player who recognizes that while there can be great success attained from the game the cost of what might be lost might not be the worth the potential glory.
  • Players are treating themselves like corporations.
    • Jacob Bell, 31, formerly of the St. Louis Rams retired recently. The former offensive tackle’s reasoning was simple. He had made enough money to live a comfortable lifestyle, he is healthy, and more importantly football is just a means to an end. He now wants to educate current and future players on the health risks of playing in the NFL. You always hear the average person talk of how they would play for free and how much they love the game. I believe today’s players love the game but they know that their time is finite and once they have achieved a level of financial stability there is no need to keep playing. Now I am not suggesting that guys are going to start retiring early because they have become wealthy but I am suggesting that some players who attain enough wealth to live a comfortable life style would rather retire with their bodies and minds in tact rather than chase championship rings.
  • The NFL has peaked.
    • It might be a long way down but consider for a moment that the NFL has peaked in popularity. The NFL is coming off a season that was almost lost by a labor stoppage only to be consumed at a frenzied rate that included a whirlwind free agent signing period, a near perfect season, phenom rookie quarterbacks, and another improbable championship run by an underdog team. Attendance, merchandise, and television ratings were at all time highs last season. But nothing lasts forever. With the true violent nature of game being exposed, the lawsuits pending, and young men dying prematurely, the NFL is slowly beginning to lose its foothold on the American public. Might sound crazy, but no one would have predicted the fall of the Roman Empire either.

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