I read an ESPN piece a couple of days ago—I lost the link—evaluating the factors that have led to the large (and expensive ) drop in the NFL’s television ratings.. It wasn’t just the gratuitous, half-baked protests during the National Anthem, the author explained. No, it was also injuries, too many mid-week games, too many bad games, viewers “cutting the cord” and leaving cable, and other factors.
Oddly, the fact that it is increasingly clear that the NFL makes its money by maiming and killing young men never made it onto the list. Maybe that’s right; maybe football fans don’t care that the heroes they cheer today will be drooling, tortured, burdens on their families in their 50s and 60s, if not sooner. Hey, they get good money to have their brains pureed, right?
If this is true, then my headline is incomplete. The NFL and its fans are pretty close to evil.
A recent scandal showed us just how cynical the league’s claims that it was addressing its concussion and CTE problems.
Tom Savage, the Houston Texans quarterback, took a violent hit from Elvis Dumervil of the 49ers ia a December 10 game. Savage rolled onto his back and lifted up his hands, which could be seen trembling, as if he were being electrocuted, a textbook indication of a likely concussion. He went to the sidelines but re-entered the game for the next series. He then left the game again and has not played since.
Some protocols on concussions the NFL has! Remember, this occurred after the news about CTE, the crippling brain disease afflicting 99% of football players p whose brains have been examined, has gotten progressively more frightening. The NFL initially denied the problem, stonewalled, and now is apparently faking concern.
The NFL announced it will not discipline the Texans for their negligent handing of Savage’s head injury. That’s odd, don’t you think, if this is something the league cares about? If a team will send a player back out onto the field after he shows those symptoms, what other players with less visible signs of concussions have been sent back out to get disabled? My guess is countless players, and in every game.
Hey, they get good money to have their brains pureed, right? Continue reading