Baltimore Ravens safety Bernard Pollard created waves on Monday when he talked to CBSSports.com and said he did not believe the NFL would exist 30 years from now, if the current trend toward curbing violent hits continues.
“Thirty years from now,” Pollard said, “I don't think it will be in existence. I could be wrong. It's just my opinion, but I think with the direction things are going — where they [NFL rules makers] want to lighten up, and they're throwing flags and everything else — there's going to come a point where fans are going to get fed up with it.
“Guys are getting fined, and they're talking about, 'Let's take away the strike zone' and 'Take the pads off' or 'Take the helmets off.' It's going to be a thing where fans aren't going to want to watch it anymore.”
Player safety is THE hot button topic in the NFL as the league has changed so much from the one that housed players like Deacon Jones, Jack Tatum and Conrad Dobler years ago.
That the league could be gone might be a radical thinking on Pollard's part, given the current popularity of pro football in the United States and the sport growing abroad as well. But Pollard's remarks might not be able to be totally dismissed out of hand, because 30 years ago, who would have thought that things called websites, blogs and Twitter would make your daily newspaper obsolete?
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Terry McCormick covers the Titans for TitanInsider.com