NFL: Sum of Its Parts

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It is far too soon to remind Saints and Chiefs fans of the old adage...the game is the sum of its parts.  However, delivering the message to the NFL itself is long overdue.  Players kneeling took the league by storm and has unfairly become the scapegoat for all of its ails.  Undoubtedly, there are a number of folks who've drawn a line in the sand on the matter....and have opted to pass on viewership over the past few seasons. Social injustice and race relations do in fact go hand and hand. Utilizing platforms to address those concerns and a dwindling fan base do not.

Look no further than the NBA to dispel that myth.  Most of the faces of the NBA are black....many players and coaches, including the white and multi-championship variety, have been outspoken on issues concerning this country and yet their league's cup continues to runneth over---ask Commissioner Adam Silver, how business is doing?  

Aside from a double step back that should come with a passport to document how well traveled it truly is, what the NBA doesn't have is a product problem.  By contrast, the NFL needs to revamp its quality assurance best practices:  The takeaway from one of its premiere weekends...the NFC & AFC Championship games....featured blind refs and a rule that left viewers shaking heads...and fingers and probably a fist or two for that matter.  Then the league puts a cherry on top of the obvious with a fine...dousing salt on the wounds of Who Dat Nation!

Throw in ongoing discussions surrounding the long term effects of concussions & the veiled attempts to hide behind legal jargon and a bad taste lingers.  One need not know how to develop an algorithm for space travel to know that hits to one’s head can have repercussions.  Ever bumped your noggin on a headboard with no real force other than that which is used to wake up in the a.m?  Right!  Veterans of the game confronted with health concerns as a direct result of their profession, should never ever have to bother with medical bills of any amount.  As another adage goes…when you know better, do better!  Take care of the shoulders which helped build the billion-dollar empire on which you stand!

Nothing frees up a Sunday afternoon like the ProBowl.  It has been moved from the Sunday after the Super Bowl to the Sunday before, alternates between the picturesque backdrop of Hawaii and always sunny Florida....yet, interest remains either flat or nonexistent.  Given the shakiness of their contracts, I don't blame players for the flag football-esque feel of the game.  I'm waiting for the league to recognize it for what it is...an honor for those selected.  Etch the names in the history books, dole out the bonus compensation & leave that air time for an infomercial on Super Bowl smoothies or something!

Atlanta will be the place to be as it prepares to host the Rams and Patriots.  As New England prepares for the sequel to the sequel of Groundhog Day, I can tip my hat to them for being fundamentally sound.  What I need for the league to stop doing immediately is tout their greatness without any acknowledgment whatsoever to the weakness of their division.  Looking at the last four standing alone....Saints, Chiefs, Rams & Patriots....all have had at least one other team from their division have a Super Bowl appearance over the last 15 years.  The Rams are actually bringing up the rear in the NFC West...following behind the Seahawks, Cardinals and 49ers!  Can't say anything remotely the same about the AFC East. That's a product malfunction.  Continuing to tell me about its greatness is like being downright braggadocios about your personal wealth as if I don't know your dad floated you at least one one million dollar loan!

Roger call Adam....during the ProBowl just might be the perfect time!! 

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