The Answer is…No
~ Amy Lignor
Of course it matters if fans watch football games. However, no matter how you look at it, the fans are never going to stop. Football is here to stay. It is the most beloved game in the United States, and bad headlines are not going to make it extinct. The jerseys are all out there, the
families head out to the stadium, paint their faces, wear cheese on their heads, and even cheer for the ones who throw four interceptions in one game. Why? Because they love their team.
This constant news regarding the ‘bad’ players in the NFL has been horrific. The video was gross, the accusations and arrests of others have brought disgust to the soul of the fan who thought one thing and received another. BUT, the fan will not become extinct to the game of football. And although fans give money to the team through tickets, jerseys, etcetera, it is the corporate world that really keeps the NFL in business. Without their advertisements and cash, the NFL could go down the toilet. Will it? No.
There has not been a line of advertisers and sponsors coming out of the woodwork and giving up. There are, however, some that came out almost immediately. It was as if they wanted nothing to do with certain teams that had handled everything so badly. Did they pull out from other teams? No. They just came in and made their point as fast as possible. In fact, they – like the fans – are looking for Goodell to clean it up ASAP so that new headlines will take over and the NFL SHIELD can be polished up once again. The advertisers are smart, and they will continue to look for the Manning’s and Brady’s out there for all their commercial needs. Taking a true captain who everyone loves will make sure their products are never seen in a bad light.
This is about violence, however. The off-field problems need to be addressed – although this is one fan who wishes that the legal system would address it ASAP. In other words; you hit your kid or your wife or your husband – you are inserted into a jail cell where the last problem you have to worry about is how many games you’ll be suspended from. But we are not going to debate the ‘punishment should fit the crime’ here.
Sponsors have stepped back when it comes to their ads being associated with games that involve the Vikings or the Ravens. CBS also stated that for the game between the Ravens and the Steelers – the very first Thursday Night Football game played this season – an advertiser walked. And although they will not pull out, major sponsors have definitely made it verbal that they do not like any of this, and threw the threat out that they would walk if the league didn’t shape up. Will they? No.
We are talking big names: Anheuser-Busch and McDonald’s, just to name two. In addition, and perhaps the one most embarrassing to the NFL, would be Procter & Gamble pulling out of a cancer initiative with the league for the month of October. Add in Radisson Hotels suspending their sponsorship with the Vikings, and you are looking at huge embarrassments until the NFL keeps its word and gets back in shape.
Is the jig up, so to speak? No. Corporate sponsors will remain with the NFL as long as it is a cleaner NFL and Goodell makes sure to do what he says he will do. Will domestic violence completely end in the U.S. and around the world? No. Unfortunately.
From the football fan’s point of view: it sure would be nice for the fan who has loved this game all their lives to see more of an Eli Manning 4TD rout or a Peyton Manning ‘almost’ comeback against the Seahawks, than have to hear about players who deserve a cell and not a uniform.
From the human’s point of view: bring back the time when justice was distributed by the system of people who wear uniforms that do not come along with a football helmet.