Saturday, February 2, 2013

What Would The NFL Look Like Without Helmets?

Today of course is Superbowl Sunday the showcase event of the NFL and the "greatest day in the American sporting calendar". Ahem. I've never found the Superbowl that compelling an occasion as it seems to be much more about a ghastly half time show, dreary celebrity cameos in cheesy 30 second commercials and an over refereed sporting contest with little drama or actual, you know, excitement. (Its a bit like the FA Cup and World Cup Finals in that respect which are always pretty anti-climactic and underwhelming too.) The growing scandal in American Football and the thing that could actually destroy the NFL is the issue of concussion related brain damage which many ex players have found themselves subject to. According to ESPN 3000 NFL players are suing or considering suing the NFL for negligence. Helmets have made the game of American Football far more dangerous that it should be as players have become used to tackling head first in the assumption that the helmet was protecting them. One solution for American Football might be scrapping pads and helmets completely and then perhaps gridiron could become a more compelling sport that looks a lot more like this beautiful game: