Wednesday, August 29, 2007

THE NFL PRESEASON IS SPELLED ZZZZZ


Count me among those who would love to see the preseason shortened by two games and the regular season extended by the same. But since there’s no hint that those wishes will be answered any time soon by Roger Goodell aboard the Good Ship Lollipop, I’ll toughen up and keep taking it you know where to the tune of $220 per game in exchange for really bad football.

Not only is it bad football, it’s really hard to gauge. What is each team trying to accomplish? How much effort are they expending? Which team has game planned more for their opponent? Are they just trying to survive?

If you ask any NFL coach what his number one goal is before each preseason game, there’s a pretty good chance that they will say, “To escape without injury.”

Think about that – “escape” without injury.

WordReference.com defines escape as an avoidance of danger or difficulty; an inclination to retreat from unpleasant realities through diversion or fantasy.

So with all this retreating and avoidance of danger going on, you really have to wonder if the preseason is nothing more than a mirage.

On one hand you have rookies, particularly those of the undrafted variety trying to survive. They are playing for their futures and the betterment of their respective families. They will exert maximum effort at all costs to be noticed – to show up on film and hopefully warm the hearts of observing coaches.

On the other hand you have veterans with fat contracts that aren’t guaranteed. If Willis McGahee goes down with a preseason knee injury, so too do his chances of seeing the end of that $40.12 million contract.

This might explain why rookies show better in preseason than they do in the regular season. It might explain why sixth round pick Prescott Burgess rocked McGahee’s world on the running back’s first practice carry as a Raven during camp this summer.

So while the rookies put on the Ritz and the fat cat vets put on the cruise control, somewhere in the middle you have on the bubble veterans trying to elevate their current standings on depth charts or looking to show well and hope that an opposing team notices in the event that they don’t survive the final 53.

All of these different and sometimes conflicting preseason objectives collide in a not so perfect storm called a NFL preseason game. And that explains in part why the results of these games are mixed. The play is uneven and to a spectator, they are relatively boring. They are the equivalent of watching Eric Clapton tuning his guitar versus seeing him rip through “Layla” live.

Roger, you’ve got me on my knees
Roger, I’m begging pretty please

Can you please cut this nonsense short?

Wake me up when September 6 arrives…

2 comments :

Mark said...

AMEN BROTHER! It's a shame the NFL and it's owners are so greedy to charge the fans FULL PRICE for a meaningless game.

Why do they do it? Because they can and know they can get away with it. You HAVE to buy the tickets if you have Season Tickets.

The NFL doesn't mind jacking UP the prices for Playoff games, but will never give the fans a break on Pre-Season.

Let's face it, the NFL, it's players and I believe the Ravens also, really do not care about the average joe fan anymore. It's all about TV, skyboxes, corporate money, 40 Million Dollar contracts.

Take a look at the home preseason schedule this season. TV dictated it. Monday Nite and Sunday nite? An announced crowd of 70,000+ ? Right, a lot of those fans must have had their purple or gray seat costumes on. Biscotti was laughing all the way to the bank.

At what point does the pre-season and ticket price madness stop? Never. Wait until next season when the Ravens raise your tickets prices ANOTHER $20 a game.

So do you pay your jacked up BGE bill or fork over MORE cash? You decide. I have already.

Anonymous said...

I agree. As do probably most NFL Season Tix owners.

What do you do though? The NFL will get their money no matter how you try and mix the season and pre season up. Shorten the preseason and regular season tix will go up, and no way do they go to a 19 week season.

Bend over and take it. It will never change. Prices will continue to increase at a rate far exceeding family incomes and so long as the team is competetive, PSLs will be sold out.