Saturday, March 3, 2012

Some More on the Saints

I said in the previous post that just punishing the Saints won't be enough. We also have to reform the culture around the NFL, because sure, it's just that fucking easy, isn't it Colby?

The fact is, it's really fucking hard, and I'm not sure how to even begin. Roger Gooddell really has tried to rein in the most despicable, violent hits. But at some point, I fear he's trying to beat up the ocean. Not only has he been mocked for his efforts, but really, how do you play football without the hits? And if you have to allow the hits, where do you draw the line so that it's clear what's acceptable and what isn't? How do you craft a punishment that actually deters players, and doesn't just make them do a loss/benefit calculation?

And if you're part of the sports media, and hits are a legitimate part of the game, how do you report on them, how do you note who is good at them, without in some way condoning them? How do you stop the fans from getting excited about them? Jesus, I've spent two blog posts soul-searching about them, and I still get excited about them.

This is why I'm worried that Troy Aikman is right. It's hard to separate football from the violence, and it's hard to keep justifying the violence- especially when it comes time for us to start thinking about letting some of our kids play football. This isn't hockey, where there are major leagues and tournaments that really tone down on the violence. How do you have football without tackling?

This is one of those times where I hope I'm not nearly as smart as I think I am.

1 comment:

  1. I don't care about this story. I don't know why, it just doesn't seem like it should be getting all the media attention. In a game where players are making hundreds of thousands, if not millions per season, how is $10k going to get you riled up to hurt someone? Pathetic.

    What's more, it's hard to play a game the right way and keep two thoughts in your head. If you are worried about stopping the cutback, and trying to injure the other guy, your play will suffer. It is just not possible to keep both thoughts in your active thoughtful brain at the same time.

    And then, every sport has a code. Look at baseball, what happens when one team beans the star player on another team? That's coming back at you. How is this any different? Now, a more manly football player would want to defeat the other team with their best players on the field, to show who's really best, but whatever. I don't play football.

    And what about all the side bets in other sports? Who can hit the most free throws in a row, or who can bunt the ball the best. Those are "bounties" too. Just for less harmful activity.

    Or in the case of the NBA, the refs who want to be the first ones to call a foul or have to pay up if they are the first one's to call a foul. A la Tim Donaguey (spelling).

    I'm more concerned with concussions being called "upper body injuries" and players sent back out without the proper examinations, or the fact that Peyton Manning had a stroke no one is talking about and has permanent nerve and speech damage now. (not a doctor).

    But Keep writing. You do not suck.