Little Pink Footballs

The suits at the NFL have created a problem for themselves.

Point #1: They employee hundreds of physically powerful men who are accustomed to a high level of violence, a number of whom would probably be dead or in prison if their high athletic ability hadn’t supplied an opportunity for a better life in sports.

Point #2: The NFL wants to sell its overpriced merchandise to women, who may enjoy the pageantry and speed, but who won’t tolerate much actual on- or off-field violence. (At least, that’s what the NFL thinks. I personally doubt women would care much, if the NFL just shrugged it off. But the suits don’t want to be asked about the latest wife-beating or shooting every week, either. So one way or another, they want to limit it.)

There’s an obvious contradiction here. In the past, the answer was simply to cover most of it up. If a player beat someone up in a bar or got caught in a crime, you paid a few people off and made it go away. But in the age of social media — and some players even tweeting and instagramming their own antics — that’s hard to do now. So the league decided to go to the other extreme, appointing itself moral den mother to the players in a quest to prevent all their bad behavior.  The league will tell you how you can fight with your girlfriend, how you can discipline your child, and what you can say about things.

That’s what the fight over Brady’s phone ended up being about. If you’re going to try to monitor all these guys and prevent or catch their misbehavior, what better way than to have easy access to their cell phones? But you don’t want the publicity of battling in court for each one, so you need to set a precedent that you can just require it as part of the job.

So when the league got the Patriot equipment guys’ cell phones and saw what matching texts would be on Brady’s phone, it must have looked like a godsend. They knew what would be there, so they figured they had him dead to rights, so he’d be willing to deal. Best of all, he’s white, so they couldn’t be accused of racism like they would have been if they’d made this unprecedented demand of a black player. So they hit him with a huge penalty, figuring he’d gladly deal to get rid of it.

It might have worked, except they overplayed their hand and got sloppy about the actual evidence-gathering and rule-following, Brady was more stubborn than expected, and they ran into a judge that didn’t buy their act. Now just the opposite precedent has been set, and the next time they see a chance to go after a player’s phone or get more control in some way, it won’t be a player who’s so easy a target.

So the league still has a problem, and it’s an unenviable one. If they crack down harder on players with criminal records, they’ll be accused of racism, which they fear almost as much as accusations of insensitivity to women. They could try to go back to keeping private lives private, but that may not be possible. The technology of gossip really has changed. Plus, they don’t want to do that. That’s what happens when SJWs infiltrate; you end up with a bureaucracy that really wants to obsess about these things.

So there probably isn’t a solution, and they’ll continue trying to buy feminists off with Pinktober and forced apologies. The game is still pretty great, but it’s getting harder to enjoy it through the nonsense.

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7 thoughts on “Little Pink Footballs

  1. Disemploying anyone for badthink or for the things we do or say outside the workplace is a slippery slope, a Pandora’s Box, and who knows what else. The NFL would have been well advised to steer clear of it, but as you say, that ship has sailed. What they have not realized yet is that even if they could get their players into lockstep, the SJWs inside and outside the organization will just move the goalposts again.

    On the bright side, I’m sure enjoying the product, apart from all that bloody pink.

  2. The NFL started the death clock when they hired the VP of Vaginas.

    Related to Brady, I’m certain Brady et. al. cheated. I’m not interested in a point for point debate, because even if he cheated, I still can’t stoke enough concern about it.

    That said, there’s NO WAY I’d let the NFL have my cell phone. First, I consider it a form of testifying against myself. Next, there’s zero chance you could trust they wouldn’t misuse the access. If I scrubbed nekkid pics, they’d either find a way to recover them and they’d “leak” on the internet, or they’d accuse me of covering things up. There’s a ton of personal info on cell phones nowadays.

  3. Anchorman, I figure he did it too. Incidentally, the NFL has a punishment in place called something like “tampering with equipment,” which is $25K. So they could have fined him $25K/ball or something and been done with it. But they saw the chance to get his phone, and when he declined to share it, they upped the ante with suspensions for failure to cooperate.

    I wouldn’t have turned my phone over either, on principle. That’s just nuts. That’s your employer saying, “Whatever property of yours we want, we can take, whether you like it or not.”

  4. The game is still pretty great, but it’s getting harder to enjoy it through the nonsense.

    Mark my words, it won’t stay great for long. The infection has gained a foothold and will continue to spread unchecked until its too late. The NFL, being a typical American state-corporate creature, doesn’t really care about product or customers, only catering to power (like MLB, they have a monopoly on the sport and don’t face any competitive pressures). Eventually it’ll morph into the sports equivalent of what GM is to the auto industry: a parody of its former self that caters to the clueless and the classless. Real sports fans will find other sports (or other pursuits) with which to occupy their time.

  5. There was a definite whiff of the SJW-type antics with the attempt to crucify Brady, though it has to be put in the context of “making up” for previously giving the Patriots a lighter slap back in 2008. So it you think about it as more of a hatchet-job, it makes a lot of sense.

    But we did see the full SJW playbook happen. First the NFL specific leaked (to ESPN) utterly false information to drum up derision about the Patriots and Brady. Then, after the (insanely) expensive report came back that Brady may have been generally aware, Goddell then “doubled down” at the hearing & with the punishment. And almost all of the responses, throughout this story, was projection by the NFL’s League Office.

    It was an utterly classic overplay, against one the league’s biggest faces. That’s why the Federal Court shot it down. While the NFL has a CBA, the NFL is always still bound to it as well. This was simply a $25k fine. But SJWs (and idiot executives) always overreach. At least the courts can, occasionally, remember to do their jobs.

    As for the actual footballs, I think Brady gave orders that they be as lowly inflated as possible. Considering only 3 of the footballs had a bit less air than the others, I think those just happened to not get as much air as the others. (Both Indianapolis’ & New England’s footballs were all below the required inflation level, though mostly because the Ideal Gas Law actually works and it seems the PSI testing equipment actually let out a significant amount of air to test.) The thing no one seems to have actually figured out is how the Patriots treat their footballs so they are stickier. That’s really how they would have a lower fumble rate.

    Oh, and just to add to the insanity, a reminder point. The NFL specifically changed the Kicking Ball (in either 2010 or 2011) so that it goes further and straighter. This is the reason 55+ yard field goals are getting routine. The NFL literally tried to make a “capital offense” out of what they do themselves. SJWs always project. 🙂

  6. “Point #1: They employee hundreds of physically powerful men who are accustomed to a high level of violence, a number of whom would probably be dead or in prison if their high athletic ability hadn’t supplied an opportunity for a better life in sports.”

    You are supposing that these athletes would be incarcerated or pushing up daisies. That usually leads to trouble.

    “Point #2: The NFL wants to sell its overpriced merchandise to women”

    Yes, their products are costly. But fans want those goods. It’s called supply and demand. Thanks, American capitalism!

    “So there probably isn’t a solution, and they’ll continue trying to buy feminists off with Pinktober and forced apologies.”

    There’s no “buying off anyone”.

    “The league will tell you how you can fight with your girlfriend, how you can discipline your child, and what you can say about things.”

    Yep. It’s called freedom of association. Don’t like it? Don’t play in the NFL.

    “Best of all, he’s white, so they couldn’t be accused of racism like they would have been if they’d made this unprecedented demand of a black player.”

    I swear it’s amazing how much race baiting is perpetrated by the left and the right these days. It’s infectious.

    “But we did see the full SJW playbook happen.”

    That’s a great conspiracy theory.

    “The NFL, being a typical American state-corporate creature, doesn’t really care about product or customers, only catering to power (like MLB, they have a monopoly on the sport and don’t face any competitive pressures).”

    Oh, brother. So I imagine you’re so upset that you’re not going to watch it anymore? I mean, if you know for certain the NFL is rotten, and you have a disdain for all things rotten, then you have a duty to do something other than watch it on Sundays.

  7. You are supposing that these athletes would be incarcerated or pushing up daisies. That usually leads to trouble.

    I said that some of them would be. Do you dispute that, considering how many of them get involved in violent situations even now when they know they’re under constant scrutiny and that their wealth will attract all sorts of dangerous sorts?

    Also, what kind of trouble? Are you going to report me to the Committee on Dangerous Thoughts?

    Yep. It’s called freedom of association. Don’t like it? Don’t play in the NFL.

    Right. Note that I never said the NFL doesn’t have the right to try to run itself as a company town and treat its players like children. I even suggested that they have legitimate reasons for wanting to do so — to which you objected. If you’re going to comment here, please try to make a point rather than just ankle-biting.

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