OPUS Mag

Far from timid • Caveat Lector

The Climate of the NFL

The Climate of the NFL

Penalizes its workers for celebration. Handles domestic violence issues with limited sensitivity and awareness. Actively losing its satisfactory ratings. Collisions on the turf, collisions in the courtrooms. Riddled with hypocrisy and steadily in the business of handing out drug suspensions. All of these descriptions lead back to the biggest entertainment corporation in the country. They are quickly becoming America’s love hate relationship on Sundays. Ladies and Gentleman, the National Football League. Come walk with me.

Where can one even start? The National Football League is one of the biggest businesses in the world and certainly in the United States. It holds ownership to the biggest sport in America and despite its glooming issues, will always have viewers. As someone who has watched this league for 10+ years I can see the changes both positive and negative. The NFL has made huge leaps in the last 5 years to make player safety a focal point, well at least that is what we are told. Granted that sudden change in priorities on the league’s part was due to multiple court cases against them from former players and their families, but they still gave an effort. On the other hand it has become quite normal to see Monday night football segments riddled with clips of apologies, public statements, and press releases all shuffled in between on the field highlights. Here is the current forecast of the NFL.

One thing we learned as NFL fans in the last two years is that when your commissioner accuses one of your most recognizable and greatest players of all time of wrongdoing without concrete evidence it’ll lead to 24/7 news coverage, court dates and appeals. Personally I never wanted to hear or mention the term “deflategate” for years and years and that was LAST YEAR, but here we are. Another cheating scandal found in the NFL that was beyond drawn out to seemingly every courtroom on the eastern seaboard. The actual infraction was extremely minute and senseless, and yet another dark cloud associated with the league.

The big D around the NFL is no longer a description of where Jerry Jones’ team plays anymore, its more commonly associated with domestic violence. In the last 5 years the NFL has repeatedly handled issues with domestic violence...poorly, and that would be an understatement. After the last Greg Hardy incident it seemed that the league had finally created a new and improved system in handling these issues, complete with new staff members and policies set in place. Fast forward to a couple weeks ago when it was revealed that New York Giants’ kicker Josh brown had repeatedly admitted to abusing his wife and surprise was still actively playing in the league. Of course when news of this came out the NFL said it would launch one of their world famous “investigations” and we all know how serious they take those*rolls eyes*.

Is it just me, or do other sports leagues not have as many weed and drug issues as the NFL? I swear its every other week somebody is getting suspended for failing a drug test for weed or some kind of enhancement supplement that of course “ they didn't know was illegal”. Now I'm also an active NBA watcher and owner of NBA league pass so safe to say I get pretty damn good coverage of that league. Yes they have issues like everybody else but I don't hear nowhere near the amount of failed drug tests in the NBA as the NFL and I find that highly interesting.

As much as there is that we deem wrong and incomprehensible this business is truly operating at the definition of “boomin.” They will continue to make billions, and we will continue to tune in on Sundays and Mondays to watch the games, NOT on Thursday though because those games are usually trash. The league is at a new all time low in many aspects. The terminology of “ NFL investigation” holds very little weight among viewers and mostly just brings back memories of concussion cover ups, for the star players, bounty gate, deflate gate, CTE research stemming from lawsuits and the AL Jazeera report and so much more. At the end of the day the NFL is a machine that seemingly cannot be stopped but that also is operating truly in a climate of distrust. How will this all play out in future seasons if there are no drastic changes? I guess we will just have to wait and see.

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