It’s August again and a young man’s thoughts turn to pro football?
Maybe for some still, but fewer than in the past.
The NFL is a deeply crony institution, between the stadium deals for billionaires paid for by taxpayers, and the special tax breaks, and the military ad deals, the NFL had been quietly nudging into decline for a while. Then last year hit where some players protested during the national anthem in what they said was a stand against police brutality, but was perceived by many fans as a middle finger to the president and to the many NFL fans who support/ed the president. The NFL allowed itself to become politicized at a time when people were looking to escape politicization. That was a major mistake.
It will be interesting to see if viewership of the NFL continues it’s rather pronounced decline of the past few years. Indeed if the cronyism and the politicization doesn’t do the league in, the violence of it may. Around the country parents are keeping their sons from playing football due to the very serious risk of head injury. How long football can continue if it is perceived that only the uninformed or those who just don’t care about their health play the game is a serious question. Football was the only sport I was ever really good at, but I don’t want my son taking the hits I took. We know better now. And frankly if my son never develops the love for football that I once had that’s just fine in my book. Getting one’s bell rung is not good for one’s computer.
So is it time to sell the franchise? Maybe. Long term trends don’t appear pointed in a positive direction but one can probably still get a nice healthy price before things get worse.
(From the Wall Street Journal)
The NFL still dominates baseball and hockey and those know-it-alls at the NBA, but the inertia is concerning. Some of your brethren assume the TV networks will keep lining up to pay billions—and, if not the networks, the nerds at Facebook or Amazon—but you’re not so sure.