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Faust

Death of football?

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Good stuff here with the Villanova symposium moderated by Andrew Brandt on the intersection of sports, law, and science.

I think the retired players are going to get killed if they argue the science here, especially the claim that the NFL withheld knowledge of the known association between concussions and long term neurological discussion. The recent consensus authored by the leading neurological experts at the Zurich conference this past week even give a :shrug: in regard to this proposed link.

Uphill battle for the former players on every level. They don't even have science on their side.

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The death of football won't be seen in our life time because the core demographic that fuels the sport won't clearly associate the risk vs reward.

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wife and i have divested ourselves of our PSLs (personal seat licenses) partly due to the direction the league is heading. mostly it was a case of buy low, sell high and i don't want to take the chance that the value falls a bit in the future due to folks, like us, souring on the league. most of my friends who are also Steelers' fans think we are nuts and that the league is not going anywhere. they are probably right, especially in Pittsburgh. but this is slowly becoming a different NFL from the one i loved growing up. WWJLD (what would jack lambert do)? we're out.

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wife and i have divested ourselves of our PSLs (personal seat licenses) partly due to the direction the league is heading. mostly it was a case of buy low, sell high and i don't want to take the chance that the value falls a bit in the future due to folks, like us, souring on the league. most of my friends who are also Steelers' fans think we are nuts and that the league is not going anywhere. they are probably right, especially in Pittsburgh. but this is slowly becoming a different NFL from the one i loved growing up. WWJLD (what would jack lambert do)? we're out.

Terrible read on the market. Reactionary. I'd still be in a buy position...not sell.

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wife and i have divested ourselves of our PSLs (personal seat licenses) partly due to the direction the league is heading. mostly it was a case of buy low, sell high and i don't want to take the chance that the value falls a bit in the future due to folks, like us, souring on the league. most of my friends who are also Steelers' fans think we are nuts and that the league is not going anywhere. they are probably right, especially in Pittsburgh. but this is slowly becoming a different NFL from the one i loved growing up. WWJLD (what would jack lambert do)? we're out.

Terrible read on the market. Reactionary. I'd still be in a buy position...not sell.
you are probably right but it is not reactionary. we have been on the fence and thinking about it for a couple years at least. and there are other factors, too, like the fan experience at the game which has been declining. i'd think that 99% of Pittsburghers would agree with you, though. the PSLs were easy to sell.

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Barbarians at the gate

Four enemies are working together which could eat away at the NFL and begin its demise.

Jack Bechta


For almost four decades now the NFL has experienced extraordinary uninterrupted growth. But there may be corrosion occurring beneath the shiny shield.

The liability is here! Liability, lawsuits and the league’s responsibility for every single player who has ever had a concussion has been lurking in the shadows for years. However, it has now arrived at the NFL offices at 345 Park Avenue. It has to be dealt with and measures must be implemented to protect both players and the league. Over 3,000 players have signed up for the concussion lawsuit against the NFL. If the players prevail in this suit and the league is held financially responsible to pay billions in damages, the NFL’s business model will change drastically. Margins will be shredded, insurance premiums will skyrocket, and the style of the game will be altered to a softer state. Liability could have a ripple effect on the style, the toughness, and the overall aggressiveness of the game we are accustomed to. If the style changes, fans may turn the channel on the NFL.

The gap between the haves and have-nots is widening: I predicted that there would be several $25 million dollar a year QBs in the very near future. It’s coming! In addition, average QBs will be making $15 to 20 million per year and the top five star players on each team may eventually account for 50% or more of the cap dollars in use per team, leaving the remainder to be divvied up by the rest of the roster. That then could result in younger players and draft picks playing and even starting for the minimum salary. The days of multiple players making near or at the average salary of $3 million dollars will be gone. This model could lead to more turn-over of the roster, more rookies playing right away and more inexperienced players on the field. Coaches will have to work even that much harder preparing these players. Could the model create resentment amongst players? Can it divide a locker-room and be a chemistry killer? We don’t know yet. But the bottom line is that football is a team sport that relies on men working together for a singular purpose. If the team-ness fades, so can the quality of the product.

Too many rule changes: There have been talks about changing or eliminating the kickoff. Can you imagine taking out the most exciting play in football? It’s been discussed for years. That’s like removing the POP from opening a champagne bottle. If the game we know starts looking dramatically different, will we still watch? Yes, these changes are implemented because of safety concerns like preventing concussions. Many rule changes have been much needed, but will the line be crossed (or has it been crossed) to where the game starts looking very different and fans start drifting away.

Less kids playing football: I have more and more parents telling me that they aren’t letting their kids play football. If the pipeline of talent gets diluted will the level of play suffer over time? This may take a few years to become a reality but it’s a real possibility. If negative findings come out relating illnesses such as dementia and Alzheimer’s to brain trauma suffered while playing football even less kids will step onto the football field.

So how do we keep our game intact while making it safer for our players? The union, the players (current and retired) and the league have to come together to work together to preserve the long-term health and tradition of the game. The league has to do a better job to include the players’ opinions when making substantial rule changes. The union and league have to be less adversarial and more transparent with each other. Coaches at all levels have to teach proper tackling techniques to improve safety. And hopefully, NFL football as we know it will be around for decades to come.

Follow me on Twitter: @Jackbechta

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Steep hill to climb for players if they are relying on the argument that the NFL has long hid from the players known factual proof that concussions cause neurodegenerative disorders, since, you know...that's still kind of an unresolved scientific question. A very important and relevant statement was published just last month in the British Journal of Sports Medicine summarizing the consensus opinion of the world's preeminent neuroscientists, neurologists, and neuropsychologists at the International Consensus Conference in Sport. In short, these experts concluded the following:

At present, there are no published epidemiological, crosssectional or prospective studies relating to modern CTEit is not possible to determine the causality or risk factors with any certainty. As such, the speculation that repeated concussion or subconcussive impacts cause CTE remains unproven. The extent to which age-related changes, psychiatric or mental health illness, alcohol/drug use or coexisting dementing illnesses contribute to this process is largely unaccounted for in the published literature. In addition, consideration for the potential genetic risk in those athletes with a family history of neurodegenerative disease and the extent to which this contributes to the clinical and pathological profiles also require further investigation.

Difficult for the NFL to hide a concussion-CTE link for which the medical community largely believes has not been adequately established as of yet. Edited by cobalt_27

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Hall of Famer Lem Barney: NFL won't be around in 10-20 years

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

Pro Football Hall of Famer Lem Barney played 11 NFL seasons, all for the Detroit Lions. On Friday, speaking at the Sound Mind Sound Body Football Academy in Southfield, Mich., Barney said he doesn't think football will make it another two decades.

"The game is becoming more deadly today," he said. "It's a great game. I think it's the greatest game if you like gladiators. It's the greatest game for yesteryear's gladiators. But I can see in the next 10 to maybe 20 years, society will alleviate football altogether."

Barney isn't alone. Even current players think today's NFL won't last. Broncos defensive tackle Kevin Vickerson, also in attendance Friday, agreed.

"They're trying to make the game safer, but it's a gladiators' sport and there's only so much safety you can bring to it," Vickerson said. "The best thing we can do is give these kids tools to learn how to tackle the right away."

And last offseason, safety Bernard Pollard, then with the Ravens, said football wouldn't exist in 20-30 years.

Barney, who is one of the countless former players suing the league for how it handled head injuries, figures he had seven or eight concussions during his career.

Edited by Faust

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Soccer has been 'the next big thing' in America since Pele was playing for the New York Cosmos 20 35 years ago.

I think the media climate has changed significantly since the days of Pele and the New York Cosmos. There was no YouTube, no ESPN3, no Fox Soccer Channel, and no FIFA video games. In short, there was almost no way for anyone with an interest in the sport to satisfy their curiosity. I think access is the key word.
They had national access on CBS and ABC. Their ratings were higher than they are today. Could they see 150 games? No, but there was tv access for anyone who was interested.

Saw this today:

http://espnfc.com/blog/_/name/relegationzone/id/1452?cc=5901

Lionel Messi's nine seasons as a professional have been notched by eye-popping achievement, be it the record-breaking 324 goals he has netted for Barcelona, the 91 goals struck for club and country in 2012, or the four Ballons d'Or landed along the way. Yet the Argentinian star's most recent accomplishment may prove to be among his most astonishing: The 26-year-old has just become the first footballer to break into the top-10 list of America's favorite athletes, according to the vast ESPN Sports Poll (October 2012-September 2013.)

"It is a constellation of factors," he says. "International soccer has become an increasing favorite of sports fans. The more they are exposed to broadcasts of elite leagues, the more they fall in love with it.

"World Cup ratings are rising on a 45-degree angle up to the sky," Ader continues. "The EA Sports factor cannot be exaggerated. Their FIFA game is the No. 2 best-seller in the U.S. sports category, behind the Madden franchise, and the more the Hispanic community assimilate ... the more they fuel the overall conversation."

By the way, Arsenal vs. Borussia Dortmund comes on in about 30 minutes (11:45 PST). Two of the best teams in the world. Should be a good game for any neutrals who are curious.

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Soccer has been 'the next big thing' in America since Pele was playing for the New York Cosmos 20 35 years ago.

I think the media climate has changed significantly since the days of Pele and the New York Cosmos. There was no YouTube, no ESPN3, no Fox Soccer Channel, and no FIFA video games. In short, there was almost no way for anyone with an interest in the sport to satisfy their curiosity. I think access is the key word.
They had national access on CBS and ABC. Their ratings were higher than they are today. Could they see 150 games? No, but there was tv access for anyone who was interested.

Saw this today:

http://espnfc.com/blog/_/name/relegationzone/id/1452?cc=5901

Lionel Messi's nine seasons as a professional have been notched by eye-popping achievement, be it the record-breaking 324 goals he has netted for Barcelona, the 91 goals struck for club and country in 2012, or the four Ballons d'Or landed along the way. Yet the Argentinian star's most recent accomplishment may prove to be among his most astonishing: The 26-year-old has just become the first footballer to break into the top-10 list of America's favorite athletes, according to the vast ESPN Sports Poll (October 2012-September 2013.)

"It is a constellation of factors," he says. "International soccer has become an increasing favorite of sports fans. The more they are exposed to broadcasts of elite leagues, the more they fall in love with it.

"World Cup ratings are rising on a 45-degree angle up to the sky," Ader continues. "The EA Sports factor cannot be exaggerated. Their FIFA game is the No. 2 best-seller in the U.S. sports category, behind the Madden franchise, and the more the Hispanic community assimilate ... the more they fuel the overall conversation."

By the way, Arsenal vs. Borussia Dortmund comes on in about 30 minutes (11:45 PST). Two of the best teams in the world. Should be a good game for any neutrals who are curious.

Hey try televising rugby, awesome sport.

Imagine if some of the retired US footballers and ex-collegiates who don't make the NFL decided to take it up, we could crush the world.

And people would watch.

Then take it one step further and add the forward pass. Now that would be a great sport in its own right. If only someone had thought of that by now.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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what is a catch? / what is pass interference? / what is roughing the passer?

are these games even fun to watch anymore? I find myself getting upset and frustrated with all the calls and ultimately choppy flow of the game.

if you weren't involved with fantasy/had a team to root for, would this be a good product to watch?

I say no

Edited by wiscstlatlmia

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It has its moments, but the games are too long. Without FF I probably wouldn't watch more than a couple football games per season.

It's almost unbearable to sit there for 3-4 hours watching commercials every time they have an excuse to pull you away from the action.

The English Premier League (soccer) is in some ways a better product. No commercials other than at halftime, fast-paced, great athletes, and games are only 90 minutes. The problem as a FF junkie is that dynasty leagues are pretty much impossible in that sport because players switch leagues like crazy. A guy might play two seasons with a French club, switch to a Spanish club for a year, and then jump to the English league the next year. I don't know how you'd account for that.

In the NFL it is nice and simple because even when players switch teams they still stay in the same league.

Edited by EBF

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The only way I can enjoy a day full of football like I remember doing when I was younger, without going crazy from the terrible flow of the game due to commercials, is to put one game on the TV that I'm interested in watching (choosing from the two games on at 1:00 and being stuck with the one 4:00 game that's on) while running a stream of Redzone on my laptop next to the TV. The only exception is when the Skins aren't on TV, I have to stream them on the laptop, and then I have to go without Redzone for a few hours. Either way, I've got my tablet for message board stuff and fantasy scores, league chat, etc.

Redzone is probably singlehandedly saving the NFL from losing lots of more casual, non-fantasy football playing fans. And they probably don't even realize it. Or is Redzone actually more popular with the fantasy crowd? Maybe I've got it backwards, and the more casual fans are fine sitting through tons of commercials and only watching one or two games.

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The time between touchdown and then the opposing team lining up to start their next drive was already long due to two commercial breaks. Now that touchdown routinely has to be reviewed and with all the touchbacks the kickoff is a waste of time. What is it 10 minutes of downtime now?

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what is a catch? / what is pass interference? / what is roughing the passer?

are these games even fun to watch anymore? I find myself getting upset and frustrated with all the calls and ultimately choppy flow of the game.

if you weren't involved with fantasy/had a team to root for, would this be a good product to watch?

I say no

So, in other words...its not much different than it has been for a long time.

PI has always been based on which ref was watching it.

They are touchy on roughing the passer...no doubt about that given the lawsuits.

But yes...the games are still fun to watch. I enjoyed last night's games.

I enjoyed quite a few of the other games yesterday too. A lot of good back and forth.

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I still have fun watching the games, but at this point I think the way the NFL has implemented the rule changes have been very short sighted. I'd like to see some statistics, but I'd be willing to bet there are no fewer injuries being averted with these new rules.

At some point they need to differentiate between incidental contact and blatant Merriweather style spearing. Grazing the head of a QB because the defender was trying to swat a pass should NEVER be a personal foul.

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Yall are victims of the mtv society having to strean redzone to your tablets etc. Try watching a 2-0 baseball game or thursday golf. Point being quit yer bichin.

No interest in Thursday golf, but a 2-0 baseball game is a nice product to watch. They could stand to be shortened, but it's not too bad.

The overall time to action ratio is pretty much the same as football (about 3 hours with less than 15 minutes of actual gameplay).

And I prefer the rhythm of the MLB commercial breaks to the NFL.

MLB's "problem" is that there are just too many games, but sitting down to watch a single MLB game is more or less as enjoyable as watching a single NFL game.

At the same time, I wouldn't consider someone finding either to be annoying to be #####in'.

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what is a catch? / what is pass interference? / what is roughing the passer?

are these games even fun to watch anymore? I find myself getting upset and frustrated with all the calls and ultimately choppy flow of the game.

if you weren't involved with fantasy/had a team to root for, would this be a good product to watch?

I say no

If you touch Drew Brees, except in the designated area, its roughing the passer. For Drew Brees, the designated area apparently is the size of a dime right in the middle of his chest.

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I think I'm in the vast minority here, but I find the parity to pretty annoying.

I prefer having a good idea who's good and who's not. I don't like the Playoffs coming down to which severely flawed team gets hot for a few games. The unpredictability I know adds a level of excitement that most love, but for me, it makes it all start to feel a little meaningless.

This is a league that just crowned Joe Flacco a world champion 8 months ago.

It's very likely that we'll watch a similar thing happen this year.

I prefer the longer compelling narrative of the NBA in that regard.

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I think I'm in the vast minority here, but I find the parity to pretty annoying.

I prefer having a good idea who's good and who's not. I don't like the Playoffs coming down to which severely flawed team gets hot for a few games. The unpredictability I know adds a level of excitement that most love, but for me, it makes it all start to feel a little meaningless.

This is a league that just crowned Joe Flacco a world champion 8 months ago.

It's very likely that we'll watch a similar thing happen this year.

I prefer the longer compelling narrative of the NBA in that regard.

: goodposting:

I'll still watch but the entire league is full of mediocre teams with bipolar like efficiency. Every team is sever flawed and injuries are far more impact fil then ever .

It's a complete joke .

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what is a catch? / what is pass interference? / what is roughing the passer?

are these games even fun to watch anymore? I find myself getting upset and frustrated with all the calls and ultimately choppy flow of the game.

if you weren't involved with fantasy/had a team to root for, would this be a good product to watch?

I say no

How is that any different than soccer, basketball, or whatever sport you would watch instead of football?

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I think I'm in the vast minority here, but I find the parity to pretty annoying.

I prefer having a good idea who's good and who's not. I don't like the Playoffs coming down to which severely flawed team gets hot for a few games. The unpredictability I know adds a level of excitement that most love, but for me, it makes it all start to feel a little meaningless.

This is a league that just crowned Joe Flacco a world champion 8 months ago.

It's very likely that we'll watch a similar thing happen this year.

I prefer the longer compelling narrative of the NBA in that regard.

I used to agree with you. But I've noticed over the past 15-20 years the more you have dynasties (in any sport), the more the media latches on and sucks that team's ****, which is potentially the biggest annoyance to dynasties and makes me turn away from the sport in question.

Look at the Heat right now. 365 days a year you can hear a story on ESPN, Fox sports, anywhere about Miami or LeBron...or SportsCenter dedicating entire episodes to "the impact of the Miami Heat doing the Harlem Shake" <<<true story by the way. Look it up on YouTube. Look at the SEC college football dominance the past what 7,8 years? Now ESPN is dedicating an entire sub-station to the conference. It's a joke. Look at the Patriots from NINE years ago. ESPN still sucks their ****. Every Pats game you see what 10-15 shots of Kraft up in his box? Not like that with any other team's owner minus Jerry. If media were as advanced 15 years ago as it is today I could only imagine what everyone would have been like with Jordan, or 30 years ago with the Niners.

Dynasties make media overindulge in one team and drive fans away. I've read this countless times over the internet. It's not just me.

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A few of my friends have jumped ship for some of these very reasons (more about the death of defense and physicality, less so about the parity). They've given up NFL, and fantasy, and are much more into soccer these days. I'm personally still hanging on.

I can see some rule changes in the next few years that will make the "defenseless" player argument more specific, but I don't think we'll like them. My guess is that within five years you will not be allowed to contact a player when he is in the act of throwing or catching - period. It won't be as drastic as two-hand touch, but it will be in that direction.

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I think I'm in the vast minority here, but I find the parity to pretty annoying.

I prefer having a good idea who's good and who's not. I don't like the Playoffs coming down to which severely flawed team gets hot for a few games. The unpredictability I know adds a level of excitement that most love, but for me, it makes it all start to feel a little meaningless.

This is a league that just crowned Joe Flacco a world champion 8 months ago.

It's very likely that we'll watch a similar thing happen this year.

I prefer the longer compelling narrative of the NBA in that regard.

I used to agree with you. But I've noticed over the past 15-20 years the more you have dynasties (in any sport), the more the media latches on and sucks that team's ****, which is potentially the biggest annoyance to dynasties and makes me turn away from the sport in question.

Look at the Heat right now. 365 days a year you can hear a story on ESPN, Fox sports, anywhere about Miami or LeBron...or SportsCenter dedicating entire episodes to "the impact of the Miami Heat doing the Harlem Shake" <<<true story by the way. Look it up on YouTube. Look at the SEC college football dominance the past what 7,8 years? Now ESPN is dedicating an entire sub-station to the conference. It's a joke. Look at the Patriots from NINE years ago. ESPN still sucks their ****. Every Pats game you see what 10-15 shots of Kraft up in his box? Not like that with any other team's owner minus Jerry. If media were as advanced 15 years ago as it is today I could only imagine what everyone would have been like with Jordan, or 30 years ago with the Niners.

Dynasties make media overindulge in one team and drive fans away. I've read this countless times over the internet. It's not just me.

Yeah, that's certainly a problem with dynasties. Even with what I said, I mostly glad the sports are different. The variety is good.

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A few of my friends have jumped ship for some of these very reasons (more about the death of defense and physicality, less so about the parity). They've given up NFL, and fantasy, and are much more into soccer these days. I'm personally still hanging on.

I can see some rule changes in the next few years that will make the "defenseless" player argument more specific, but I don't think we'll like them. My guess is that within five years you will not be allowed to contact a player when he is in the act of throwing or catching - period. It won't be as drastic as two-hand touch, but it will be in that direction.

Your friends gave up on the NFL due to a decline in physicality, and then picked up soccer?

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I still have fun watching the games, but at this point I think the way the NFL has implemented the rule changes have been very short sighted. I'd like to see some statistics, but I'd be willing to bet there are no fewer injuries being averted with these new rules.

At some point they need to differentiate between incidental contact and blatant Merriweather style spearing. Grazing the head of a QB because the defender was trying to swat a pass should NEVER be a personal foul.

I imagine the way things have changed would make getting meaningful statistics impossible even for the NFL. The number of concussions being caught, and the way in which they are treated is drastically different. What is considered a concussion today often would have gone completely uncaught and unreported in the past.

I do disagree with you about the short-sighted comment though. I think we may not like how the rules were implemented, but they were done with a lot of forethought.

When the blows to the QB's head rule first came out, it was called very aggressively per the NFL's direction to the officials. If you aren't sure, call the penalty was essentially the rule. They did that for two seasons or so, and there were so many calls that players changed how they were playing to avoid them... which is exactly what the NFL's goal was.

Then they backed off on the aggressive calling, told refs to only call it when it was a significant blow to the head. The number of penalties dropped, and now the number of really bad calls is probably down to the same level as for any other kind of penalty.

The same exact thing is happening with hitting receivers in the head. They started out with err on the side of throwing the flag. This year they have done the exact same thing as with blows to the QB's head and changed the direction to the refs to make the calls when they are more sure.

It's gone largely unnoticed in the press and on the forums, but there seem to me to be way, way fewer blow to the receiver calls now. They still happen, and there are still bad calls. I don't know exact stats but I would be floored if there aren't half as many of those calls now as in past years.

We might not like having the rules there at all. But the NFL put the rules in to change how people play, and implemented them in a fashion to bring that about quickly and then be able to back off some. Not short-sighted at all in that regard.

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Every time I see "I don't like it anymore" I'm just floored. Do you think your anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest? The NFL is flourishing. They are more popular. They are making more money. You won't be missed.

What they really fear is what baseball is becoming. When people just stop watching and nobody even takes the time to whine about it they will worry. Ambivalence is what they really fear.

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Every time I see "I don't like it anymore" I'm just floored. Do you think your anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest? The NFL is flourishing. They are more popular. They are making more money. You won't be missed.

What they really fear is what baseball is becoming. When people just stop watching and nobody even takes the time to whine about it they will worry. Ambivalence is what they really fear.

Do you really think anybody here thinks that their "anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest"?

(Not that I even recall very many saying they "lack interest")

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Every time I see "I don't like it anymore" I'm just floored. Do you think your anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest? The NFL is flourishing. They are more popular. They are making more money. You won't be missed.

What they really fear is what baseball is becoming. When people just stop watching and nobody even takes the time to whine about it they will worry. Ambivalence is what they really fear.

Do you really think anybody here thinks that their "anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest"?

(Not that I even recall very many saying they "lack interest")

Ok. What's the point? it just comes off as whining. Is there some productive aspect I don't understand? Is this some form of emotional release that the rest of the board is going to benefit from?

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A few of my friends have jumped ship for some of these very reasons (more about the death of defense and physicality, less so about the parity). They've given up NFL, and fantasy, and are much more into soccer these days. I'm personally still hanging on.

I can see some rule changes in the next few years that will make the "defenseless" player argument more specific, but I don't think we'll like them. My guess is that within five years you will not be allowed to contact a player when he is in the act of throwing or catching - period. It won't be as drastic as two-hand touch, but it will be in that direction.

Your friends gave up on the NFL due to a decline in physicality, and then picked up soccer?
I was gonna ask the same thing Edited by Fariq

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I might be done with the NFL if they take out the kickoffs and punts.

Oh just quit now. If you're all worked up over punts and kickoffs, this game really wasn't for you to begin with.

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watching soccer stinks, i have no interest and i played for 15 years

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I might be done with the NFL if they take out the kickoffs and punts.

Oh just quit now. If you're all worked up over punts and kickoffs, this game really wasn't for you to begin with.

Not worked over punts and kickoffs. More about the degree they are willing to change the game. They are fundamental parts of the game. Football over the last few seasons has gotten to the point that we look for a PI call after every incompletion and a roughing the passer call every time the QB gets hit. It does detract from the game.

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watching soccer stinks, i have no interest and i played for 15 years

I got into it after the 2010 World Cup. It definitely has its share of pluses and minuses, but I think it can be pretty entertaining if you watch the right matches. The English Premier League in particular is a pretty good product if you like the NFL. Not as much emphasis on speed and strength, but still a lot of good athletes. Decent parity (though not as good as the NBA/NFL) and lots of amazing goals. The low scores don't necessarily equate to boring games because it's really more about the build-up and the close calls.

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Not sure what's happening in other markets but there are large youth football programs here in Minnesota that have seen 35% drops in registrations since 2010.

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I might be done with the NFL if they take out the kickoffs and punts.

Oh just quit now. If you're all worked up over punts and kickoffs, this game really wasn't for you to begin with.

Not worked over punts and kickoffs. More about the degree they are willing to change the game. They are fundamental parts of the game. Football over the last few seasons has gotten to the point that we look for a PI call after every incompletion and a roughing the passer call every time the QB gets hit. It does detract from the game.

They are erring on the side of safety, no doubt. Blame it on the whole CTE litigation nonsense. The players manufactured an environment that forced the league to react with overly-protective rules. The pace of game is a legit problem that impacts how 70-80% of the game is playednd hopefully gets loosened up a bit. The kickoffs and punts stuff...couldn't care less what they do. You and I are on agreement though on all the pace of play stuff.

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what is a catch? / what is pass interference? / what is roughing the passer?

are these games even fun to watch anymore? I find myself getting upset and frustrated with all the calls and ultimately choppy flow of the game.

if you weren't involved with fantasy/had a team to root for, would this be a good product to watch?

I say no

How is that any different than soccer, basketball, or whatever sport you would watch instead of football?

I guess it's not really... basketball has gone down this road as well... my two favorite sports are both borderline unbearable to watch now

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what is a catch? / what is pass interference? / what is roughing the passer?

are these games even fun to watch anymore? I find myself getting upset and frustrated with all the calls and ultimately choppy flow of the game.

if you weren't involved with fantasy/had a team to root for, would this be a good product to watch?

I say no

If you touch Drew Brees, except in the designated area, its roughing the passer. For Drew Brees, the designated area apparently is the size of a dime right in the middle of his chest.

hah! no joke, the Drew Brees roughing the passer call was what made me come post this... the guy did absolutely nothing wrong

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Every time I see "I don't like it anymore" I'm just floored. Do you think your anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest? The NFL is flourishing. They are more popular. They are making more money. You won't be missed.

What they really fear is what baseball is becoming. When people just stop watching and nobody even takes the time to whine about it they will worry. Ambivalence is what they really fear.

Do you really think anybody here thinks that their "anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest"?

(Not that I even recall very many saying they "lack interest")

Ok. What's the point? it just comes off as whining. Is there some productive aspect I don't understand? Is this some form of emotional release that the rest of the board is going to benefit from?

to me, I think it's blatantly obvious the product is terrible ... it's just masked by fantasy football and the amazing athleticism of the players.. the actual game itself sucks at this point

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I think I'm in the vast minority here, but I find the parity to pretty annoying.

I prefer having a good idea who's good and who's not. I don't like the Playoffs coming down to which severely flawed team gets hot for a few games. The unpredictability I know adds a level of excitement that most love, but for me, it makes it all start to feel a little meaningless.

This is a league that just crowned Joe Flacco a world champion 8 months ago.

It's very likely that we'll watch a similar thing happen this year.

I prefer the longer compelling narrative of the NBA in that regard.

: goodposting:

I'll still watch but the entire league is full of mediocre teams with bipolar like efficiency. Every team is sever flawed and injuries are far more impact fil then ever .

It's a complete joke .

I don't really get how this is the NFL's fault that there are no superpowers right now. Do you want to get rid of the cap or something? Have the Dallas Yankees?

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A few of my friends have jumped ship for some of these very reasons (more about the death of defense and physicality, less so about the parity). They've given up NFL, and fantasy, and are much more into soccer these days. I'm personally still hanging on.

I can see some rule changes in the next few years that will make the "defenseless" player argument more specific, but I don't think we'll like them. My guess is that within five years you will not be allowed to contact a player when he is in the act of throwing or catching - period. It won't be as drastic as two-hand touch, but it will be in that direction.

Your friends gave up on the NFL due to a decline in physicality, and then picked up soccer?
I was gonna ask the same thing

haha - I have the same argument with them. They're all very convinced though, and try to "evangelize" anyone who will listen about how it's a superior game.

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Every time I see "I don't like it anymore" I'm just floored. Do you think your anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest? The NFL is flourishing. They are more popular. They are making more money. You won't be missed.

What they really fear is what baseball is becoming. When people just stop watching and nobody even takes the time to whine about it they will worry. Ambivalence is what they really fear.

Do you really think anybody here thinks that their "anecdotal lack of interest matters in the slightest"?

(Not that I even recall very many saying they "lack interest")

Ok. What's the point? it just comes off as whining. Is there some productive aspect I don't understand? Is this some form of emotional release that the rest of the board is going to benefit from?

This is a message board where airing of gripes is somewhat customary. It's a fantasy football message board, so some gripes about the NFL can be expected.

It's not productive, and I don't think anyone's under the impression that Goodell is reading this thread for ideas about how to improve his product.

Just think of this thread as NFL Festivus. And it's not over until someone pins EBF.

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