September 24th will probably go down as the record breaking day that social media blew up. 14 million viewers for Monday Night Football ended in a controversial call, thus setting the virtual world in an array of plethora.
The NFL has had plenty of issues with the 2012 replacement referees and last night’s game between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers may go down as the most catastrophic ending in the history of professional football.
Weeks upon weeks have been building up with bad calls, misspoken penalties and debates, around the league, about “who’s right and who’s wrong.” This season clearly shows that the NFL has gotten it wrong.
For the last couple of seasons, the NFL has proven to be a dynasty of wealth. Recording nine billion in revenue annually, the advertisers, venues and fans feed the every desire to continue the greed mongering that is the NFL.
Stated several years ago, with the $100 million signing of Albert Haynesworth, it was clear that the NFL was taking on a whole new direction. Next came the billion-dollar stadium, with the $40 million television screen that hangs from the rafters. Did we really not see last nights game coming?
The NFL is a business. It is an entity that thrives on revenue and entertainment. It’s commodities are the players and fans. With that said, the NFL has far reached their desires of commercialism when the outcome of football games depend on replacement referees. The very referees that do not know the NFL rules, penalties and pressure. The referees that were obtained from Pop Warner leagues and thrown into a world which they only dreamed about.
As negotiations continue with the regular referees, to reach a contractual collective bargaining agreement (CBA), the pains and struggles of the players and fans continue. The NFL loses nothing.
The NFL will not lose advertisers, nor will they lose contract bids for televising games. In fact, they are locked into contracts through 2014. Most Monday Night Football games, as well as Thursday Night Football, is based on ratings. Thus allowing the stock to rise on advertisers to get their product to the public.
Many have spoken about boycotting the NFL, last night following the game, including the NFL players. There is one problem for the players, they can not boycott. They can not go on strike. The agreement they reached in the 2011 CBA was “there shall be no protest, lockout or strikes by any player.”
The players are clearly left without a stance.
Unless, of course, you turn to social media in which you could have found hundreds of tweets on Twitter from Packer players, other NFL players and even former NFL players. Troy Aikman even weighed-in and stated, “This game is a joke.”
Drew Brees, quarterback for the New Orlean’s Saints tweeted, “Ironic that our league punishes those based on conduct detrimental. Whose CONDUCT is DETRIMENTAL now?” He was making reference to the Saint’s Bounty Gate that has taken the NFL and nation by storm. Depositions will take place this week, on behalf of Jonathan Vilma, in New Orleans. The NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, will be present in the attorney’s office of the Saint’s linebacker.
Bounty Gate. Weekly assessed fines for bad hits. Coaches now getting fined for bad behavior on the sidelines (Denver’s Head coach John Fox was penalized a $30,000 fine this week). And now, a game ending debacle that will keep talking heads, fans, players and the social media clammering for justification of such an outcome.
Unless, you have a connection to the Seattle Seahawks, sprinkled with a couple Bears fans that gleefully unload the permagrin on their faces when the Packers lose, one may not see that the missed penalties and overturned interception call was perhaps incorrect. For the Bears, it’s a divisional rival thing. For Pete Carroll’s Seahawks, it’s a win. Time to move on.
In fact, what is the outcome that one loss can make to a season? Home field advantage in the playoffs. The record of even making the playoffs. Yes, down the road to this 2012 season, last nights game may be a contributing factor to the playoffs and home field advantage. Another equation the NFL may not want to face.
What does the NFL care?
Aren’t they the business that takes no prisoners? As long as the consumers are buying into the franchise that is the NFL, the NFL will not lose. They can’t. Right?
This could possibly make it that more frustrating that the consumers and players lose out more because the powers-that-be controls the sport, controls the entertainment, controls the contracts, the advertisers, the commercialism, the product. They control all that is professional football in America.
Witnessing society release their anger on an outcome of a football game would leave one to think that a storm is brewing. A storm that is larger than a wrongly called coin toss at a Super Bowl. A whirlwind more greater than the Tuck Rule or the end to the Raiders 2001 season. Yes, the debacle from last night’s game will affect the NFL, but not as greatly as it has affected the Green Bay Packers and their fan base.
The affects will come from within. As stated years ago, when you get so enthralled in commercialism and combine that with a sport, the sport then loses it’s integrity and it’s meaning. The meaning to football is not about money. The meaning is not about personal lives that are destructed due to a players lack of judgment.
The game of football is about a gladiator’s mindset to get the ball. To tackle the opponent. Push them back in yardage while the offense is trying to score. Football is not a complicated sport. There have been rules laid down, drafts made each year, contracts drawn up and games scheduled. What could be so hard about the sport?
You have owners that are billionaires and strive for more dollars because it’s an investment. The owners are invested in their team and the competitiveness of the game. The owners thrive on the power when their respective team hoists up the Lombardi Trophy in their ultimate moment of validation.
The ultimate validation.
Nonetheless, that game has turned into such a tourniquet of delusion that fans and players have no say to stop the bleeding. Certainly the Freedom of Speech can be exercised, but the 1st Admendment may not overpower the billionaires that seek the ultimate validation. It’s a battle too great for the small consumer, who goes through such lengths to book flight tickets, hotels and game tickets. The consumer who saves up three paychecks and plans to attend a game. No, the consumer has no say.
They just keep buying, continue watching and, in the end, are left broken hearted. This is what football is today. Does this sound like the Mike Ditka, Deacon Jones or Jim Brown football to you?
Football today is not about integrity. Very few players are in it for the game. Even so, players, alike, have admitted this is a business. Rightfully so, that is a fact that remains to be debated through out this season and more seasons to come. The business of football has overtaken the sport of football.
The NFL, without a doubt, has been exposed for what football has honestly become. A greed mongering business.
It would cost NFL teams roughly $100,000 each to meet the 120 referees’ demands. Goodell’s salary alone costs teams roughly $340,000 each. In comparison, Mike Ditka made $12,000 a year.