NFL inmates are running the asylum

I turned on the NFL Network Sunday evening to watch my hometown team, the New Orleans Saints, play a football game against the Los Angeles Chargers.  Granted, it's preseason, but at least it's football.  So I would expect any other coverage on the NFL Network, which is supposed to stand for the National Football League, to center on – get this – football.

On the screen, there is a black man looking at an old house in the middle of a large field.  For a moment, I'm thinking this may be the story of a young man who makes it up from humble beginnings all the way to the NFL.  But the first thing the interviewer talks about is, "It's been five generations since my family owned slaves."  And I immediately mute the TV.

Do the morons who run the NFL understand what the league is about?  Yes, I know: first of all, it's a business.  Got it.  And I understand that in business, the customer is not always right.  However, the NFL is there to entertain the consumer, to provide an escape from the daily drudgery of life – or, put another way, offer something to the paying customer.  The customer will spend this money to be entertained, and if the NFL won't do it, the customer will go elsewhere.

The league staff is doing its best to destroy the NFL.  People who would never miss a game in years past have shut off their TVs on Sunday.  A friend from New Orleans mailed in all of his Saints gear to the commissioner in protest of that moron Colin Kaepernick.  The league upper staff seems to like the approval of the New York-L.A. crowd, people who write for and read the N.Y. Times, the champagne set.  Fine, but understand that the base of the league's fans, living in flyover country, the men and women who buy the tickets, pay for NFL GameDay, purchase the team merchandise, are Mr. and Mrs. Joe Sixpack.  Many are veterans, and they don't care for spoiled multimillionaires insulting this country.

The greatest coach in the history of the league (When the trophy for the championship is named for you, there is no discussion!), Vince Lombardi, authored a motivational narrative that graces of desks and walls of countless executives, coaches, and salesmen: What It Takes to Be Number One.  One of the paragraphs says what is required of every member of a team:

Every time a football player goes to ply his trade he's got to play from the ground up – from the soles of his feet right up to his head. Every inch of him has to play. Some guys play with their heads. That's O.K. You've got to be smart to be number one in any business. But more importantly, you've got to play with your heart, with every fiber of your body. If you're lucky enough to find a guy with a lot of head and a lot of heart, he's never going to come off the field second[.]

I don't question that Kaepernick is talented – he showed that in his first two seasons.  But he lost his starter's position and is losing his career because he is concerned only about himself.  When he started to slip, did he work harder to improve his performance, show some leadership to motivate his team to play better?  Kaepernick is the quarterback, the leader.  No, he did not.  Kaepernick showed what he's made of, and that's poison to the glue that holds a team together. 

Jerry Jones laid down the law with the Cowboys: you don't stand for the National Anthem, you are off my team.  Roger Goodell, that is how you handle these spoiled players.  Right now, the inmates are running the asylum.  Get control of your league now, or you will see it die.

Michael A. Thiac is a police patrol sergeant and a retired Army intelligence officer.  When not patrolling the streets, he can be found on A Cop's Watch.

 

I turned on the NFL Network Sunday evening to watch my hometown team, the New Orleans Saints, play a football game against the Los Angeles Chargers.  Granted, it's preseason, but at least it's football.  So I would expect any other coverage on the NFL Network, which is supposed to stand for the National Football League, to center on – get this – football.

On the screen, there is a black man looking at an old house in the middle of a large field.  For a moment, I'm thinking this may be the story of a young man who makes it up from humble beginnings all the way to the NFL.  But the first thing the interviewer talks about is, "It's been five generations since my family owned slaves."  And I immediately mute the TV.

Do the morons who run the NFL understand what the league is about?  Yes, I know: first of all, it's a business.  Got it.  And I understand that in business, the customer is not always right.  However, the NFL is there to entertain the consumer, to provide an escape from the daily drudgery of life – or, put another way, offer something to the paying customer.  The customer will spend this money to be entertained, and if the NFL won't do it, the customer will go elsewhere.

The league staff is doing its best to destroy the NFL.  People who would never miss a game in years past have shut off their TVs on Sunday.  A friend from New Orleans mailed in all of his Saints gear to the commissioner in protest of that moron Colin Kaepernick.  The league upper staff seems to like the approval of the New York-L.A. crowd, people who write for and read the N.Y. Times, the champagne set.  Fine, but understand that the base of the league's fans, living in flyover country, the men and women who buy the tickets, pay for NFL GameDay, purchase the team merchandise, are Mr. and Mrs. Joe Sixpack.  Many are veterans, and they don't care for spoiled multimillionaires insulting this country.

The greatest coach in the history of the league (When the trophy for the championship is named for you, there is no discussion!), Vince Lombardi, authored a motivational narrative that graces of desks and walls of countless executives, coaches, and salesmen: What It Takes to Be Number One.  One of the paragraphs says what is required of every member of a team:

Every time a football player goes to ply his trade he's got to play from the ground up – from the soles of his feet right up to his head. Every inch of him has to play. Some guys play with their heads. That's O.K. You've got to be smart to be number one in any business. But more importantly, you've got to play with your heart, with every fiber of your body. If you're lucky enough to find a guy with a lot of head and a lot of heart, he's never going to come off the field second[.]

I don't question that Kaepernick is talented – he showed that in his first two seasons.  But he lost his starter's position and is losing his career because he is concerned only about himself.  When he started to slip, did he work harder to improve his performance, show some leadership to motivate his team to play better?  Kaepernick is the quarterback, the leader.  No, he did not.  Kaepernick showed what he's made of, and that's poison to the glue that holds a team together. 

Jerry Jones laid down the law with the Cowboys: you don't stand for the National Anthem, you are off my team.  Roger Goodell, that is how you handle these spoiled players.  Right now, the inmates are running the asylum.  Get control of your league now, or you will see it die.

Michael A. Thiac is a police patrol sergeant and a retired Army intelligence officer.  When not patrolling the streets, he can be found on A Cop's Watch.