Discussion: Why the NFL Draft Makes Me Think Twice About My Love For Football

Discussion for article #235874

Interesting article and probably Caitlin Cruz’s best yet for the site, but will she write anything that doesn’t feature hand-wringing and guilt over some aspect of life she doesn’t directly control?

“I’m using up oxygen and producing CO2, the fact that I didn’t will myself into existence won’t excuse that”

Cheer up, Caitlin!


In the late sixties I was hired as the photographer for the campus newspaper. One of my jobs was to photograph sporting events including football. That required me to be on the sidelines of the football field and many times I was near the team benches. From that perspective I had a unique view of the game and it was ugly. Every game injured players would come off of the field bleeding or with broken bones. They were patched up and sent back out to the front lines.

I haven’t watched a football game since because being a participant of any kind in such brutality makes me feel dirty not entertained.


Look at her photo…it screams goth, at least at some point in her life. And in my experience, one a girl goes down that Morrisey path, they rarely cheer up.


My husband boxed when he was a young teen. He loved the sport and still does, but boxing is even more brutal than football. Why do people do these sports when they know the dangers? For money, for fame, to get out of their neighborhood, move up the scale from poor to rich. Although there are many young people like the Manning’s who are already rich and come from a famous family, so family tradition and talent comes into play too. Also, just the love of the sport comes into play too. People who support NFL football should not kid themselves about the dangers of what players are going thru. It is much like the Roman gladiator games, people know the lion can get the player, but they can’t stop watching.

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Astonishingly bad writing. Why is this on TPM’s website? I don’t come here to read undergrad intern writing: I wrote enough of that crap when I was one.


what a shame that so few paths out of poverty are available to these kids. Sign up for the military, or risk your health playing football or some other violent sport to entertain the masses and have a 0.01% chance of getting a college football scholarship, and a 0.0001% chance of having a career - however brief - in pro football.

There is little difference between this and the ancient Roman gladiators, who were slaves who had a glimmer of a possibility of winning their freedom, but were much more likely to be devoured by lions or slain by better-armed and better-trained fighters.

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I get the feeling TPM uses the model of employing young, inexperienced writers who will work cheap. Maybe they will turn out to be talented, maybe not…


I agree with all of the negative aspects of NFL fandom Cruz delineates.

To maintain my lifelong attachment to watching football hinges on my ability to assimilate all of that sleaze … not gonna happen.

At least when you get older you learn that one feels better about them-self more when they do not support such obvious exploitation !

I hope others find that out at an earlier age.


Playing team sports – whether it’s football, baseball, basketball or lacrosse – offers much more to a young boy or girl than simply a shot at a scholarship or a professional paycheck. If that were the case, then every young athlete who outgrows his youthful playing days would have to consider themselves a failure if the athletic participation did not end in either of the above-mentioned achievements. But I guarantee you that very few young athletes would consider their time on various teams as a disappointment – I know I don’t. I played football, basketball and baseball in high school, and enjoyed nearly every bit of it for the camaraderie of my teammates and the pure exhilaration of competing, of learning to function as part of a unit and then doing it successfully. There is so much more to playing sports than just the potential for injury (several of which I had during football, though none were enduring) and a shot at some kind of financial reward. Sometimes it’s just fun to play.


Its hard not to feel like this once you know the facts. The money involved sickened me long ago when the first baseball player got three million bucks a year. After that, it was watching a three million dollar a year player sit out games for turf toe and relatively minor injuries after paying and traveling to see games.

Hockey sufficed for a while because at least they play even when having to get stitches during the game. But that also ended.
I still love the games and sports but the industries suck.

Careful, they will come after you. What I do is block the vulgar featured images from slice, and then try not to read any of the slicey articles that pop up on the main blog. Also my TPM bookmark is to the editor’s blog, not the front page. That way I don’t draw the ire of the slice’s editor by constantly complaining about how bad the writing is. In fairness, Cruz is probably going to make the cut.

Takes a long time to get the nasty taste of Slice out of your mouth.

Great post! Most athletes realize, especially by the time they’re in High School, that they will never be a pro athlete making millions of dollars or even playing Division I at the collegiate level. It is about camaraderie, competition, physical fitness, etc… However, we are replacing real sports with video games. This constant but they may get hurt is destroying our youth.

Just stop watching. It’s easier than quitting cigarettes, let me tell you.

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Lots of middle school and high school kids found participating on their school’s sports teams disappointing. And there are plenty of activities that give a child the chance to build teamwork skills. And yes, sometimes it’s just fun to play. But all of that rather misses the point of the article.

The type of football the author is talking about is the ‘semi-pro’ (NCAA Div. I) and professional levels and the complexity of the fans’ relationship to the sport.

One does not exist without the other. You can’t decry football at one level while cheering it on another. High school and college football are inexorably tied yet the author only speaks of the dangers and knows nothing – as a non-player – of its youthful thrill.

I believe the shorter version of this blog entry is summed up in two words: cognitive dissonance.

Sports is sleazy. Athletes are liars, druggies and cheats (and here’s where the cognitive dissonance kicks in among sports fans who leap up crying, “It’s just a few bad apples.”) and it’s never gonna change. So in the words of a commentator in “Airplane!”: “Sheila, they bought their tickets, they knew what they were getting into. I say, let 'em crash!”

Of course one can hold conflicting views on a subject. One’s job, political figures, the list is lengthy.

And the thrill of having played is but one aspect on the ‘plus’ side of the ledger. And author admits to being a fan, so obviously she finds other ‘pluses’ in football even if she doesn’t specifically list them.