The NFL and an 18-Game Season


In a recent interview with The Tennessean, NFL Commisioner Roger Goodell had this to say about an 18-game season:

"“We do think it is attractive to season-ticket holders. I hear that all of the time from our season-ticket holders. We have not abandoned our position on that. We do think it is the right thing for the game. It improves the quality of what we do and it improves the value for you as season-ticket holders. … We do think it is a benefit for everybody, but we want to do it the right way, and we want to do it responsibly. That includes the players’ perspective.’’"

Doesn’t that blow your mind? Fans of the NFL would vote for more NFL…. In other news, if you feed a child ice cream, they will accept more. Of course fans would love more football! However, does it reduce the value of the games to venture into this endeavor?

“It improves the quality of what we do…”

Let me interpret that line for everyone, Goodell speaks of making money. More games results in more opportunity to purchase tickets. The more the opportunity, the more the tickets sold and that results in money for the owners, whom Goodell works for. I know that it’s meant to sound as if it improves the quality of the game. The thing about Goodell remains that he is now and has always been truly passionate about football. I consider this to be a great thing. However, do keep in mind that he represents the owners. Sure, it would be great to watch more football, but at what cost?

I’m not sure of every reason why, but I do know that since the NFL changed from 12 games to 16 games, there have been more injuries sustained. It seems now that every year, at least one big player has a huge injury and multiple players are dealt with injuries throughout the season. I’ve gotten to the point where I almost expect a Pro Bowler from each division to get injured and then at least 3 main players from a playoff team to go down for multiple games. It’s pretty bad. Two more games and what will we be watching? Can it really improve quality?

Another reason I do not advocate the 18-game season is the loss of two pre-season games. You have to understand, there are people with Hall of Fame careers that started their careers off of pre-season games. Yes, I know that they are boring and not as fun as watching a regular season game, but you can’t build a roof without the concrete base at the bottom. The final roster is not set without those last two pre-season games. The guys that are “on the bubble” don’t get that chance to get 3 sacks in the 4th quarter of the 4th pre-season game and finish out making the roster. If we lost those two games, what great players do we lose that will never have that career?