The NFL is not dying a slow death and the field will not be widened. Ridiculous.
Collisions are the big problem and they are the result of wearing too much protective gear. Why do rugby players suffer less head trauma than NFL players? No helmets. They don't run into each other, they wrap up tackle. The NHL has a similar problem in regards to head trauma from collision checks out in the open or along the boards.
if they take away kicks or sacks on the QB i'll find something else to watch.
The pessimist complains about the wind;
The optimist expects it to change;
The realist adjusts the sails."
- William Arthur Ward -
For all you guys saying it will never happen, think again. These game changing rule moves will continue to creep along until we no longer recognize the game we love. They will have a major impact on the game.
Consider the rule moving kickoffs from the 30 to the 35. Touchbacks skyrocketed from 416 in 2010 to 1120 in 2011.
The constant threat of lawsuits and pressure from the political class will insure continued rule modification and the game we know today will be changed forever.
A few getting seriously injured? Good luck finding an ex-NFL player with no permanent injuries. The game shortens lives.
"NFL". Trademark. That isn't a sport - it's a brand. What you watch every Sunday isn't sport - it's entertainment. The league wants to keep serving this up but if it continues down its current path, it won't be able to for much longer.
You can preach the "In my day" crap all you want, but the reality is, people will stop playing if former stars continue to kill themselves. Couple that with the inevitable lawsuits which will be filed against the league and it will eventually reach breaking point.
Ultimately, this isn't about the players' safety at all, it's about the league's. It has to protect its players to protect itself.
Listen, most pro sports have an inherant abusive quality to them, basketbal players often end up with shoddy knees and backs, we know the myriad health problems of football, hockey is damn near the same and even baseball players don't transition through life any easier. (elbows, shoulders, knees...)
Even in Motocross/Supercross the riders endure tons of ACL/MCL, ankle, spine, back injuries and many times surgery.
But as Flip said, all of these ceased being "Sports" when they became professional. They all became "Brands" and Corporate money-making.
and that's the sad truth. We have our Beer, we have our Bread and we have our Games.
NFL Championships : 1927 1934 1938 1956 Super Bowl Champions: XXI XXV XLII XLVI