Outta’ Right Field: How would we have survived without the NFL?

By Nick LaRosa
September 21, 2011

Well, the second week of the NFL season has just concluded and I think I speak for everyone when I say we should all be giving thanks that our Sunday afternoons will still contain a healthy dosage of football.

After a lockout lasting 132 days halted free agency and trade negotiations, July 25 saw the signing of a 10-year collective bargaining agreement, ensuring that football would be around in all its glory for the next decade.

But what if after four months worth of negotiations a new deal was still not in place? What if the lockout never came to a close?

Players would still be participating in individualized workouts unassociated with their teams. General Managers wouldn’t be able to establish the rosters of their dreams. And the fans would be suffering, unable to support their favorite teams.

With Autumn just around the corner, Sunday afternoons without the NFL would be a gloomy site to all, especially to advertisers. Had the 2011 season been canceled, upwards of $12 billion in advertising revenue would be extinct.

Clearly, the lockout would have been disastrous for the sport of football and all who follow it. Compared to hockey, baseball and basketball, the three other major sports in America, the loss of football would have signaled a fall of agony.

Think for a second about how much of our weekend revolves around football. Sunday mornings are spent cooking food and preparing for the big afternoon tailgate at the stadium while the afternoons are enjoyed in either a reclining chair or an upper bowl seat at the stadium.

It doesn’t matter where you are though; what does matter is who you are with and which team you are screaming at to score a touchdown. Just as team sports rely heavily on motivation and camaraderie, the art of being a football fan is not much different.

Had the summer yielded worse results about the state of the NFL season, the passion we have already seen after two weeks would not be existent. Teams like the Lions, Redskins and Bills are all off to surprising 2-0 starts, igniting their respective fan bases with hope for a strong campaign.

The defending Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers are also off to an undefeated start so far, spurring conversations about a possible repeat come playoff time. While it is still too early to make predictions, the important fact is that there will be a Super Bowl to look forward to come February.

Ladies and gentlemen, football is back and here to stay.

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Nick LaRosa

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