Pardon me for turning my back on the NFL. Throughout the labor dispute and threat of a potential lockout I can’t help but become a bit cynical about the state of this super power league. I feel as though I am in the minority with these feeling however, as I listen to the talking heads and read the columnists comments about their “hope” for a new collective bargaining agreement.
I’m not hoping for anything. The whole situation makes me sick. While the billionaire owners are trying to squeak out some extra cash from the millionaire players, am I suppose to remain hopeful that they figure out a way to do that peacefully? More and more my answer is a resounding “no”.
I feel no sympathy for owners that will lock the gates and keep fans out of stadiums, some of which have been publicly funded by our own tax dollars. Nor do I feel bad for the players who make more money in a year than I’ll see in a lifetime, but still have so many financial issues that they have to ask rookies to spot them a hundred G’s.
Oh yeah I’m hopeful alright.
In a lot of ways as this thing drags on, I find myself rooting against everyone. The fact of the matter is that the NFL has created a drug that we’re addicted to. We’re “hopeful” that the rich folks nail this thing out so we can get another fix from them. The fans are the worst part of this whole negotiation because we’ve become so reliant on their product.
I’m the type of guy that holds grudges though and the looming lockout has put a magnifying glass on my crazy addiction. I’m surrounded by an exciting hockey team in D.C. with the best player in the world on their roster and a baseball team who finished 2010 with a lot of success and has had an exciting spring in their fantastic new facility. But I’m also encompassed by NFL junkies who are instead watching crappy combine video and attempting to figure out who their teams will draft in a few months.
If football wants to close it’s doors then good riddance. They think they’re strong enough to have their addicts return when they decide to reopen, but the fact is that fans will turn on them just as I have begun to and they’ll turn to what’s available. Maybe that’s the reality check that the NFL needs.