This will be a miscellaneous football rant. I happen to love football. Grew up watching football, but lately it is just a bit much.
I have to rant about the Notre Dame player. If I hear one more report on this I honestly think I might puke. ENOUGH. Seriously. It doesn’t matter, does it? If people are dumb enough to think this guy is blameless in the whole mess, so be it. I just can’t even believe the endless press this is generating. He’s a college athlete. Yes, sure a Heisman contender. Yes, a good player and probable NFL draft, but who cares? Why do we have this idiotic 24/7 news cycle that grabs onto stories like this. All we hear for weeks is the same shit, over and over. Honestly, it is endless.
In a totally different vein, but also football related, is the Junior Seau case. The family filed a civil suit against the NFL. The suit claims the NFL knew the risk of TBI and withheld that information from players. REALLY? You have got to be kidding. At the very core of football, as a sport, is the tackle. Without tackling there is no defense. So much tackling that the players wear helmets. Yeah, really. They actually wear helmets. There isn’t a single player in the country that doesn’t understand the risk of this sport. Strapping a state of the art helmet onto your head speaks volumes. Never mind the emphasis that was placed on brutal hits. The NFL has changed. Hits that were once common place, imagine Taylor’s hit on Joe Montana and multiply that by 10. It was the way the sport was played. Given what these players are being paid should we even care? They signed a contract, and showed up at camp. The day they put that uniform on they accepted the risks. It just boggles my mind. They get paid to lay it out there. To take a hit, and to lay a hit on another player. That is the game. Now because the media is focused on concussions and CTE the rules change. No hitting the QB above the shoulder, no helmet to helmet hits (intentionally), and no hitting an unprotected receiver in the secondary. Unreal. It makes me nuts. This is a sport of hits. Let them hit. Sure we are seeing this correlation with CTE in players with histories of head injuries. Yes, some of them commit suicide. Others become violent. True, but so do people who have no history of TBI. Think the media is painting this with a broad brush, especially given so much more research has to be done. It is the infancy of the study into this correlation and into CTE. There are thousands of retired players who don’t kill themselves or anyone else. Many who played in an era of poor protective equipment. Helmets have changed and developed as new materials have been used. Why don’t these guys lose their marbles and put a bullet in their heads? Why do the media lay blame on a condition that can only be diagnosed posthumously? I just don’t buy it yet. Even if I did, they are athletes that get paid to do a job. The risks are clear as day. Why change the sport to protect them? What is next?
Should we start putting age limits on gymnasts? Because we know years of repeated stress and injury on prepubescent girls stunts growth and leads to crippling long-term disability in many? Seems that might be a far more useful sport to look at. These are children. They don’t know the cost the first time they set foot on a tumbling mat. Should they sue? I think there are sports that need new rules, but football ISN’T one of them. That is my rant for today…