OK, America. You’ve now had your football fix for the 2012-13 season. You happy now? Think you can make it to, oh, I dunno, the OTAs?
Football is your preferred game. You’ve made that quite clear. But is it possible you might wish to reconsider?
Suppose you were new to this culture and someone described a game to you, a game that was essentially barbaric and brutal, a game in which the participants were at risk of serious permanent injury, both physical and neurological. Would your first instinct be, “Oh boy, I can’t wait to see that?” Or would it be, “That’s legal?”
I do not hate football. But I do not love it, either. To me, there are better games — baseball and basketball being two of them. But while I do not love football, I can certainly appreciate it. It has to be 60 years since I went to my first football game, and I am reasonably well-versed in the history of the sport in both its college and pro versions. I can root, root, root for the home team with the best of ’em.
Appreciating football means being impressed by the athleticism of the great players and by football’s own brand of inherent situational drama. I can easily become invested in a game-clinching touchdown drive or a vital goal-line stand (See, Ravens, Baltimore, Super Bowl XLVII).
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