A Burgundy and Gold Obsession
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Cake or Death?

The Tipping Point

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No, I'm not predicting some massive crisis for the NFL whereby the tens of millions of rabid fans who devour the NFL each Sunday (and Thursday) suddenly decide to divest themselves of the spectacle in pursuit of other, more moral endeavors. No, I'm talking about something far more serious. My own personal tipping point. I think we're getting close to it.

I love the Redskins. I love the history, I love the players, I love the coaches, I love the owne... all right, too far. I love my team. I have played fantasy football for 10+ years now, and loved every second of it. Won my money league twice now, which is a pretty cool accomplishment. I love football. Never gotten in to college that much, but man do I love the NFL. I love the poetry to a Barry Sanders run, the savagery of a Sean Taylor hit, and the artistry of a Drew Brees pass. Love the game. But something is changing.

It's getting harder to watch, for me personally. When I see the huge hits, it's going to be hard not to think of Jovan Belcher, Dave Duerson, and the others who have been irrevocably altered by the violence of the sport I love so much. I'm going to have trouble watching and cheering, now that we are finally getting a clearer picture of the damage done to the brain of those involved. It's more than a little sobering. For a while, I was more than happy to put my head in the sand and cheerfully ignore the grisly details. But I think we're nearing the tipping point for me.

And the NFL isn't helping itself. The way the league handled the Ray Rice situation was despicable. As someone with a 17 year old daughter, the thought that they were infinitely more interested in protecting "the shield" and covering their asses than in ensuring her safety and wellbeing is sickening. The league deserves every ounce of criticism it has weathered over the last month, and ten times more. It becomes increasingly difficult for me to support a league with such a self-serving, deplorable mindset. It's tough for me to rationalize the time spent away from family on Sundays to watch something which makes my stomach turn when I think rationally about it.

Last Sunday I spent the day at our local Go-Kart/Putt-Putt/Arcade with my two youngest. We all enjoyed a couple of hours hanging out together, and I especially loved it. Instead of clicking on fantasy scores, obsessively watching injury reports and wasting my Sunday afternoon in general, I spent guilt-free time racing around the Go-Kart track listening to the squeals of my 8 year old. Good times.

Get it together NFL. I'm already a little queasy thinking about the head injury problems. When you compound that issue by acting like the self-obsessed, moronic, clueless jagweeds I know you are but try not to acknowledge, well...

I may be close to the tipping point.
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