And now…it’s time for another edition of “Engine Joe Says!” If you can’t understand what he says, you never will. This is all from his mind, his heart and his writing.
Hit it, Engine Joe.
So the NFL executives and cantankerous owners finally decided to reach an agreement with the refs yesterday. Big whoop! Are we supposed to give a rousing standing ovation? Does it warrant us to give them a bag of cookies? Should there be a carnival and then throw a huge parade worthy of a team that just won the Super Bowl?
Over the last three weeks I heard fans, former NFL players and revered sports journalists alike saying if we really want to force the NFL owners and Commissioner Roger Goodell to reach a deal with the NFLRA and get the legitimate officials back on the field than we the fans should just stop watching NFL games. While that sounded great in theory, just how realistic was that?
It’s not realistic at all.
It’s totally implausible. No matter how disgusted leatherheads may be with the inferior on field governance of these rent-a-refs it doesn’t really matter. There was no chance there would be a large, calculated, nationwide organized NFL TV viewing boycott to force the NFL offices hand. And the NFL and its owners knew that. So in reality that theory as well as our viewership input is really negligible.
It’s just like NFL Hall of Famer QB Steve Young said, “It’s just doesn’t matter. The NFL doesn’t care.” Over the past several years since Goodell took over as commissioner, he, and the league offices have vociferously pontificated that the integrity of the league and protecting the shield is of the utmost importance. They’ve also said they’re number one concern is player safety. Yet, Goodell and the owners are aggressively pushing to expand the regular season to 18 games. How does that enhance and protect the personal welfare of your on-field employees?
Let me help you…it doesn’t.
And the retired players? To quote legendary OutKast emcee Big Boi, “Boy Stop!” The NFL continues to blatantly disrespect and spit in the face of the trailblazers and forefathers of the gridiron whose blood, sweat, tears, crippled bodies, irretrievably damaged brains and even lost limbs upon which this NFL conglomerate is built on with insufficient pensions. The lack of consideration is absolutely deplorable.
That’s what’s so infuriating. The league’s executives profess to be so concerned about the players and the overall good of the game, yet you bemire the on-field product with substandard officials. NFL owners continually insult our intelligence, as well as diminish the integrity of their own game. You quibble frugally over a few measly dollars out of a $9.5 billion enterprise, not wanting to dispense a few extra dollars to the NFLRA when the cash they wanted to retain in the pension is really infinitesimal in comparison to your unlimited treasury of funds.
Over the next five years according to ESPN columnist and First Take debater Stephen A. Smith, the NFL is projected to rake in between $12-16 billion. With that type of annual revenue generation conceding a few extra dollars is nothing. NFL referees $149k salary for this season is a night on the town at a swanky restaurant with a group of friends and few bottles of Cristal and Dom Perignon White Gold Jeroboam. Yet, they still chose to be petty and needlessly refractory, holding up the negotiation process. At the end of the day, this impasse really wasn’t even about the officials. It was about as Yonkers, New York hip hop group, The Lox said in 1998, about “Money, Power, Respect.”
The NFL owners are quintessence of Wu-Tang Clan’s classic 1993 song, “C.R.E.A.M. – Cash Rules Everything Around Me.” The owners know what a powerful goldmine they’re sitting on. The inescapable truth is that after families return home from church, or stay at their abode watching the NFL pregame shows they’ll inevitably come to worship at the Church of Pigskin every Sunday.
Each football fans across the country will enter the gates of the sanctuary with thanksgiving. We’ll offer earnest prayers and exultation, while paying out offerings and tithes for the exhilarating service in our best Sunday garb of our favorite teams jerseys, sweater and ball caps as we read from the book of remarkable QB prophets Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady. And for the truly exuberant and faithful, revivals are held outside the stadium in the form of succulent tailgating feasts, burning the fattened calf of hot dogs, brats, burgers and steaks.
This past Monday during the disastrous the Green Bay Packers-Seattle Seahawks debacle 16 million viewers tuned in, garnering a 12.9 rating. That’s the third highest rating of the year for any cable produced programming behind only the 2012 BCS National Championship Game and the 2012 Rose Bowl. The owners know that no matter what as long as NFL football is being played fans will fill up stadiums and run to their boxes to see the action.
That’s why they’d have no qualms about putting inferior, Division III, NAIA and high school fake refs on the field to legislate the games. I don’t blame the replacement officials. They’ve obviously unfamiliar with NFL rules, and severely ill-equipped to call the blinding speed, athleticism and physicality of the NFL’s supreme athletes. It was a formality their incompetence would show and terrible officiating blunders would be made.
What’s egregious and unpardonably pathetic is that the league’s offices and NFL owners would allow these marginal refs to defile the sanctity of the game and determine the outcome of contests with their ineptitude. They take the public for mindless suckers. Franchise CEO’s look at us like coke fiends, who’ll always go to the crack house to get a hit of the unparalleled ecstasy of the irresistibly accosting pull the mesmerizingly barbaric violence, physicality and amazing athletic prowess these modern day athletic Trojans exhibit in our version of the Roman Coliseum; NFL stadiums. All the while, they’ll continue profiting monumental mozzarella like JD Rockefeller laughing all the way to the bank, cause no matter what happens they’ll always win because they’ll always get paid.
So no, NFL and the organizational bosses, you DON’T deserve a standing ovation. You’re efforts aren’t laudatory. They’re litter and disingenuous. You’re didn’t agree to a deal for the refs, the players, the coaches, or the fans. You did this to cover your own hypocritical behinds. It took a colossally direful, cataclysmic gaffe causing social media outrage, discussions on “The View,” CBS “The Morning Show,” NBC’s “The Today Show” and from our illustrious President of the United States just to get you to reach the compromise that should have been done weeks ago. And it could potentially cost the Packers a playoff spot.
But the gluttonous totalitarian skybox bosses continue to reel in absurd astronomical amounts of dead presidents and the congregation will keep giving their offerings and coming to service. Isn’t that really all that matters? We’ve got football. LET THE CHURCH SAY AMEN! TOUCHDOWN!
Thoughts? Comments? Concerns? Post below.