Mystery seems to surround the 10% falloff in NFL ratings this season. Yet in a new survey, 50% of those who said they watched less NFL this season revealed they “don’t approve of National Anthem protests”-- versus 30% a year ago. The second-biggest reason for the falloff: Viewers are “not comfortable with players' off-field behavior."
So it is all about the players -- and not the game or how it's broadcast? I don't think so.
Here are a whole bunch of other reasons why the NFL needs to get its act together.
They MUST replace Phil
Simms. He is the worst color man in the history of football. OK, thank you. Tony Romo is one of the best. He can predict practically every play before the snap. Adds huge insight to the
game as the pros play it.
Three nights a week, really? Add to that, the move by ESPN to play all the best college games Saturday night, and you are asking men to convince their wives that football roadblocks all other social activity now FOUR nights a week. The only rational explanation is that all NFL executives have terrible marriages -- or will soon.
Now I realize that New York is probably your biggest market and that you are often contractually obligated to broadcast Giants and Jets games when both are having terrible seasons, but come on. Do you really think I'm going to invest three-plus hours on either one of those lame-assed teams (even if they are playingthe 1985 Chicago Bears)? Might be an incentive for teams to get better if you tell them, "After midseason, once you fall below .500, you ain't on TV no more."
Speaking of three-plus hours. An average professional football game lasts three hours and 12 minutes, but the time when the ball is actually in play amounts to only about 11 minutes. That is a lot of fill -- and you think it's OK to run an average of over100 commercials, most of which we have seen 56 times before and feature the same stupid stereotypical themes: fast food, beer, cars, insurance. Perfect spot for a book or newspaper publisher: "Instead of watching this drivel, you can spend the next three to five minutes reading a story or chapter (and getting smarter instead of fatter)."
It is not lost on the entire nation that nearly every retired NFL player has CTE to some greater or lesser extent. And that you spent years trying to hide the fact that football will eventually take not only your body, but your mind. You can keep changing the rules under the guise of "protecting the players" -- but in reality, they're just expensive pawns in your municipally supported money-making machine. You are going to pay the Commissioner HOW MUCHthis contract?
The whole "we are a big family" posturing is cloying at best, Clearly, from the very public owner disputes, your history of denial and treatment of players, it is every man for himself. Perhaps you think all that nonsense resonates with young families who are deciding that it's probably not a good idea for their kids to play football at any level. So the socioeconomic divide will only accelerate, with the less-informed and economically challenged the only ones left to fantasize that an NFL contract is at the end of the tunnel.
For every game that was an exciting as the Super Bowl, there are 25 that end up 17-14 and boring as all hell to watch. No amount of end-zone dancing will ever save those games and mitigate the growing feeling that perhaps the NFL isn't worth that much of my time.