Answers to the Wrong Questions Indicate Fan Support for Eighteen Games Weak

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell gave his state of the league address yesterday.  Amongst the things he talked about was the proposed 18 game regular season:

“Repeatedly, the fans have said the quality of the preseason doesn’t meet NFL standards. That is … the basis on which we started to look at the 18-and-two concept, by taking two of those low-quality, non-competitive games and turn those into quality, competitive games that the fans want to see.”

He’s got a point about the preseason.  But I’ll say that he might be surprised (as I was) by the number of fans who would rather just see those two games eliminated.

I, personally, think the more football the better.  But many fans I know disagree with me because they are worried that the quality of the game will be diluted.  That seems to be supported by the results of this poll from the Associated Press:

“Of everyone surveyed, 27 percent strongly favor or somewhat favor adding two regular-season games and dropping two preseason games. When the group is narrowed to those identifying themselves as NFL fans, support for the change rises to a total of 45 percent — yet only 18 percent who strongly favor it.”

There seems to be little doubt that fan support for an extension of the season is weak.  And, of course, anyone who has been paying attention knows that the players as a group hate the idea.  But I think everyone is asking the wrong question.  It seems clear that the owners aren’t going to easily agree to anything that doesn’t include the two extra games.  So let’s try this one:

Which would you rather have?  Eighteen games in 2012 or a lockout where there are less than 16 games 2011?

That one shouldn’t be a tough choice for anyone.

Fantuz Flakes Commercial and Other Points of View


  • But you know when you’ve really made it?  When you have your own dandruff shampoo (the video was made by the Hamilton Tiger-Cats).
  • Biggs continued his excellent positional analysis series with the running backs.  I thought this was an interesting choice of words:

Harvey Unga faced an uphill battle to make the 53-man roster as an addition in the supplemental draft and the Bears found a convenient way to redshirt him with a hamstring pull in training camp.”

Kevin Colbert, the Pittsburgh Steelers’ director of football operations, noted that nearly three-quarters of Pro Bowl players were selected in the first three rounds.

‘‘’So it’s very important that you get those players right,’ Colbert said, ‘and we really emphasize making sure we don’t make mistakes on the 1’s, 2’s and 3’s. If you get lucky on the later rounds, great. But the 1’s, 2’s and 3’s, if you miss on them, they can set you back for some years.’’’


  • Pittsburgh defensive end Brett Keisel has been growing his beard for seven months.  He thinks it gives the Steelers’ “Super Bowl powers”.  From Sam Farmer at the Los Angeles Times.
  • NFL commissioner Roger Goodell addresses the negotiations with the Player’s Union in this video as he answers a queston from Chad Ochocinco:

One Final Thought

I am not going to pick the Super Bowl game, especially against the spread, because I think its too close to call.  But in what I consider to be a good sign for the Steelers, most of the money in Vegas is coming in on the Packers.

Most of the bets aren’t in yet.  But MGM Resorts International, which operates 10 sports books on the Las Vegas Strip, said about 70 percent of the money bet so far in its casinos is for a Packers victory.  Bookies aren’t in the business of losing money.