Are We Hesitant To Suspend NFL Players Because Of Fantasy Football?
Here's an interesting theory: The NFL and its fans don't want to suspend football players who do bad things, like Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson, because of fantasy football. Banning elite players affects fantasy teams, and fantasy affects the bottom line -- therefore, don't ban elite players. This idea comes to us courtesy of Nischelle Turner on CNN today:
On this very site, minutes after it was announced that Adrian Peterson had been indicted and was facing arrest for beating his son with a switch, I wrote a post called "Who Will Step In For The Vikings
If Now That Adrian Peterson Is Held Out?" It did well, and is currently the biggest hit on our site in the last week. So yeah: We care about fantasy football, and it looks like a lot of other people do too.
The NFL is also under fire for being alternately tone-deaf and heavy-handed, to the point where no one has any idea what the punishment should be for any particular infraction. Two games! Indefinitely! As long as Roger wants it to be! Rice's suspension in particular has to make us wonder if the league cares more about appearances (which is tied to profit) than actually doing the right thing.
But any fantasy player who says things like "OH GOD ADRIAN PETERSON IS OUT WHAT THE FUCK THIS IS BULLSHIT HOW CAN THE LEAGUE/THE UNIVERSE DO THIS TO ME?" or sends death threats to players, or takes "the game" more seriously than the actual game -- or life, for that matter -- is on the fringes of the fantasy sports scene, let alone reality. So anyone who blames a virtual game for actual problems needs to re-examine their priorities on the matter. Yes, we're talking to you, Nischelle.
Now, do NFL teams, executives and players prioritize winning and profiting over all else, including the health of themselves and others? That's another conversation.
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