1. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will be on the cover of the Dec. 17 edition of Time magazine.
The question of “How far will Roger go to protect the game he loves?” is a confusing one. Who is attacking football?
Is it the players? Some players don’t like Roger Goodell all that much, but that’s usually only because he doles out punishments liberally whenever there’s a hard hit or whenever James Harrison opens his mouth. They also don’t love that concussions are shortening their lives at a massive clip.
So is it the concussions that are attacking football? There were 218 reported, diagnosed concussions suffered by players in 2010, and 190 in 2011 — and those are just reported concussions. Some retired players claim to have suffered thousands of concussions over the course of their careers. Still, Goodell has assured us that the game is becoming safer by year, and that “no sport is 100% safe” anyway.
Is the American public attacking football? Has the media finally drummed up enough concussion hysteria that average parents will no longer allow their child on the pee-wee football team and refuse to watch football on Sundays? Well, NFL revenues have jumped from $6 billion when Goodell took over as commissioner in 2006 to an estimated $9.5 billion this year. Television ratings have been rising every year. America loves football.
So I don’t know. Football seems perfect just the way it is, right, Roger?
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Goodell has done a lot of posturing to make it seem like he’s made the game safer. But he’s never actually done anything substantial, because to actually make football safer you’d have to fundamentally change the game. Goodell is a hack. And football is simply one of the absolute worst sports for an athlete’s physical health. Which is why my son will never play it.
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