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Football fans upset with NFL

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Shawn Farhadian, Blogger

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There’s an inevitable truth in football this year: it is far from perfect.

Football players have constantly expressed their frustration over league policy and decisions, as they play a dangerous sport with a considerably low salary in comparison to hockey, baseball, and basketball players in the United States. Considering the fact that these players still play a disastrously dangerous sport in blistering cold temperatures, it is clear to see why players are finally voicing their opinions and taking a stand.

Moreover, football fans are increasingly becoming football skeptics. There has always been a stigma regarding football and safety, but with more cases of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), concussions, and other forms of brain damage, there has been a renewed spark in the debate of football safety in the professional realm and below, stretching all the way down to pee-wee football. In addition, millions of fans across the nation have expressed their opinions supporting or criticizing the anthem protests, creating somewhat of a divide amongst a community that has rarely seen political involvement of this depth. Television ratings have fallen 7.5 percent when compared to the beginning of the previous season, and nobody seems to be a fan of Commissioner Roger Goodell. The NFL has issues in almost every possible field.

These issues have even affected students at Masters such as Jackson Stanich, a former NFL fan who has boycotted the 2017 season amid these controversies. What’s most interesting about his boycott, however, is his reasoning: Stanich is taking a stand against the Los Angeles Chargers due to the team’s relocation from a loyal San Diegan fanbase. The Chargers are facing record-low attendance this season, as many reports indicate that the team’s home games have more fans of visiting teams than of the Chargers themselves.

The dysfunctions of the NFL extend to its teams and their respective fan bases, as seen with Stanich and the Chargers; moreover, Commissioner Goodell has increasingly feuded with prominent owners of such franchises, including Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys and Robert Kraft of the New England Patriots. Jones is currently looking to sue the NFL over Goodell’s possible contract extension.

Goodell, along with the rest of the league, must recognize that TV ratings and sponsorship deals are imperative for successful business operations of the league, and satisfying the desires of owners, players, and fans–at least to an extent–are crucial to reaching that objective.

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Football fans upset with NFL