This column first appeared in the Platte County Landmark on February 3, 2016
There’s a phrase in many corners of the Internet and in the media that means making a prediction so bold that it literally melts the plastic sitting around the reader of the viewer. A stance that is so wild it needs to be ridden in a seven second rodeo.
I’m referring, of course, to the HOT TAKE and it is the chosen weapon of talking heads from CNN to ESPN to even VH1. “Donald Trump Hates America” would be a good example of one. Whether or not that’s true, it’s more about the shock and awe factor. “Alex Gordon Hates Puppies” would be a good one that is sure to start the conversation.
I try to stay away from giving HOT TAKES on the Internet mostly because those takes are typically wrong and typically uninformed. You don’t know Alex Gordon’s stance on puppies unless you’re a puppy or Alex Gordon. You might think Donald Trump hates America, but it still can’t be said as a fact.
That being said, I’m about to clue you in on the biggest HOT TAKE that I’ve ever sincerely given on the Internet. And here it is:
The NFL will not celebrate Super Bowl 75 in its present form.
As you know, this year we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the ultimate sporting event on the planet – the NFL’s Super Bowl. (It’s that thing that’s played between $2 Million Dollar Doritos commercials)
But here’s the problem, unless you’ve been living under a rock the past couple of years, you’re aware of the grave danger NFL players are putting themselves in with regards to head traumas and a condition called CTE. Just this week, two high profile players retired earlier than expected- — Calvin Johnson and Justin Tuck. Johnson, a wide receiver for the Detroit Lion is calling it quits despite being only 30 years old. He is not injured and many speculate it’s because of prioritizing long term health over the chance to play in a Super Bowl. Tuck was a hero of two Super Bowls with the New York Giants but leaves the league after only 11 years.
Furthermore, there are now compelling signs that the influx of more players is dwindling in future years. ESPN sites a 10% decline in youth football participation this past year adding to declines the previous years.
But all that doesn’t add up to my HOT TAKE. You’re still going to find people who will take money to beat each other up.
No, the big chip in my HOT TAKE are fans like kerouac5 from Reddit.com who wrote that he has been a season ticket holder to the Chiefs since 2004. He has, by all accounts, tremendous seats in section 104. He writes, “I am starting to dislike the NFL an awful lot as a business entity.”
The reason the NFL won’t be celebrating Super Bowl 75 is that the money is going to dry up. More and more fans like kerouac5 are debating whether to spend their dispensable income on an industry built around sacrificing the health of their employees and one like baseball where the players are more approachable and more likely to have their senses at age 65.
Kerouac5 ended our conversation with this, “That’s it, ‘why am i supporting this?’ comes to mind an awful lot.” He’s going to find more and more who agree with him. Better watch those commercials while you can.
Watch out. The plastic in your chair is starting to melt.
[Featured image from San Jose Mercury News]