It’s November 5th, and I was reading an August 23d column of MMQB. In particular, a fan’s comments to MMQB regarding Jones’ Hall of Fame candidacy:
I am a big fan, but I feel I need to point out how far off the mark you were in your Jerry Jones assessment. Jerry Jones introduced something to the NFL that wasn’t present before him: unadulterated greed. His marketing and sponsorship revenue increases gave the NFL a single provider for merchandise (Reebok, Nike), television (DirecTV) and video games. All of which were bad for the average fan. His “upping of the stadium game” has led to hundreds of MILLIONS of dollars foisted on taxpayers to subsidize stadiums of extreme extravagance. Ford Field cost under $500 million but was sufficiently nice to host a Super Bowl. Now stadiums have quadrupled in cost, which led to the Rams and possibly Raiders and Chargers to relocate. His introduction of greed also brought in new types of owners. Instead of passionate football people, greedy businessmen who will bastardize the game for a buck are everywhere. Jerry Jones helped turn football from a sport into a business, which has led to ownership solely focused on profit rather than fans or the good of the game. Jerry Jones mortally wounded the NFL. It’s just a matter of time until it bleeds out.
MMQB responded with:
You share the feeling of many anti-Jones people. I have heard from many of you. The fact is the NFL has grown in value exponentially in his time, and some people hate that. His franchise is worth 27 times what it was the day he bought it 27 years ago. But regarding the NFL “bleeding out”—have you seen the TV ratings, Anthony? Not trying to be flippant here, but the game won’t die because of Jones’s avarice. It will die only if the concussion/head trauma issues kill it, and those have little to do with Jones’ impact on football.
That’s why I enjoy reading older columns. MMQB HAS seen the TV ratings, and later asked fans about their decline. The thing MMQB and the league refuses to recognize is this: There are other things for people to do. There is so little time for recreation, we’ve kind of found alternatives to pro football. The biggest things going in pro football are video games and fantasy football. There’s not as much team loyalty anymore. The talk on Monday mornings is related to how did your fantasy team do instead of did the (team) win. Meanwhile, the pure greed of NFL owners like Jerry Jones — the worst thing to happen to professional football, ever — will eventually topple the league. It’s true I hate the Cowboys but that stems from the fact their fans support this guy who, along with Bob McNair and Daniel Snyder, are destroying the league. These are guys who think making more money is the top priority, and winning is an occasional way to enhance the brand. They don’t give a crap about football and once the league starts its inevitable decline, they will bail on it as soon as possible. Their fans aren’t even smart enough to realize it. Changing rules — like making pass interference commonplace, for the sake of bringing in casual fans sends people like me packing.
I’m a former season ticket holder of two NFL teams. I spent thousands of dollars on the NFL up till about 5 years ago. What do I now do on Sunday afternoons? I do landscaping on my property, because seeing football isn’t that big a deal. It’s just hype, followed by commercials, followed by a series of penalties then afterwards, touting of a quarterback. I can DVR a game. If the Broncos are playing, I’m not even going to watch it. The sport has become utterly predictable, much like a soap opera. It’s a waste of time.