To borrow from the latest academic cliché, watching the NFL on TV functions as a sort of reverse trigger-warning for me. I put on a Cowboys game and all of the emotions I built up as a kid during the Landry, Staubach and Danny White America’s Team era instantly start to kick in no matter how badly Jerry Jones has mismanaged the team’s current incarnation, and I find myself sucked into the TV screen for a couple of hours “Money For Nothing”-style. I suspect every team sport has a similar effect on their fans – perhaps even more so if they’re rooting for the team of the college they once attended. But for me, that narcotic fix is merely temporary, and once the kinetic action of the game itself is over, it’s back to remembering how intractably politicized the NFL has become, and how the league, headquartered on Park Avenue, Ground Zero of Northeast Corridor Establishment Liberalism, has forgotten its hardscrabble Midwestern roots.
Like the NYT, the NFL will be shut down in my lifetime.