It’s becoming clearer every single day that the NFL and the former NFLPA would rather have a lengthy court battle than to sit down like adults and work out their differences in this lockout.
The owners figure that regardless of how long it takes to get a new collective bargaining agreement done that the fans are sheep and they will come back and continue to spend their money and all will be well again in the NFL world.
Sadly, this is one time the owners are dead right.
A majority of NFL fans are indeed sheep. I would consider myself one of them. We love this sport so much that we are willing to endure a lockout that involves losing everything and gaining nothing. If that isn’t the definition of blind loyalty then I don’t know what is.
Then I got to thinking: we may be approaching this lockout totally backwards and may have to resort to a rather difficult course of action
Instead of sitting biting our nails over whether or not the NFL will have football in 2011, we may just have to stop paying attention to it. As painful and as difficult as that will be, it is something that may be needed if we want this lockout to end before the season falls into serious jeopardy.
How could this possible have any effect? Here’s an example: for those of you who have kids, what’s the best way to stop a temper tantrum? Ignore child that is seeking attention and that child usually falls back into line sooner or later. Same applies to the children currently handling the negotiations for both the NFL and the former NFLPA.
If we ignore them long enough, eventually they will get the message. We will hit them in a place far more painful than their Twitter accounts, Facebook pages and email inboxes. We will hit them in the area most dear to them—their wallets.
Once the owners see their precious revenue begin to dry up, they will finally snap out their lunacy and sit down with the players in good faith.
The same holds true for the players. Many NFL players (not on the Packers) thrive on attention and enjoy being in the spotlight. Once that light goes out, reality settles in that they aren’t as important as they thought they were. Note I am not grouping in all NFL players in this argument. Unfortunately, the ones that have the biggest say are those more concerned with their own well being than that of other players.
Doing this would be a difficult task and would involve fans finding other things to do on Sundays. Personally, thanks to the recent success of the Brewers, the lockout has become more tolerable for me. I have re-fallen in love with the game of baseball. For those without baseball teams in the area or those that don’t enjoy the game, there are other things you can do. Get involved with your community or a political cause. Get some of those long overdue projects done. There is plenty more out there in the world than just the NFL as crazy as it sounds.
I know you may be thinking I am asking you to behave almost like a jilted lover. In a way, I am. I usually am not a fan of boycotts and I think they end up just making a statement rather than having an actual impact. In this case, however, we have no choice. We have but one weapon in this battle and it is our money.
So consider this a “yellow alert” NFL fans. The time is approaching where we may need to strike back. The NFL owners and players may need the wakeup call that the entire world does NOT revolve around them and that we can find other things to do on Sundays. While we would rather watch football, it’s not the end of the world if the NFL goes away.
This may be painful to do but unfortunately it very well could become a necessity. That said, it should never, NEVER, have come to this.
NFL and former NFLPA, you are perilously close to to forcing the fans’ hand. If you do so, then be prepared to deal with the consequences of your actions (or lack thereof).——————
Kris Burke is a sports writer covering the Green Bay Packers for AllGreenBayPackers.com and WTMJ in Milwaukee. He is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA) and his work has been linked to by sites such as National Football Post and CBSSports.com. Follow @KrisLBurke