"Las Vegas bookmakers make their money by balancing their risk, but sometimes they simply come out on the wrong side of too many bets." With the regular 2012 NFL season now over and the playoffs about to begin, please take a moment and shed a tear -- or more likely, raise your beer -- as you consider the terrible beating Las Vegas sports books absorbed in 2012.
(LAT link, so potentially behind a paywall depending on your number of previous visits in last 30 days.) [more inside]
posted by mosk
on Jan 2, 2013 -
Alex Karras, N.F.L. Lineman and Actor, Dies at 77 [NYTimes]
"Alex Karras was one of the National Football League‘s most feared defensive tackles throughout the 1960s, a player who hounded quarterbacks and bulled past opposing linemen. And yet, to many people he will always be known as an actor — the lovable father from the 1980s sitcom “Webster” or the big cowboy named Mongo who famously punched out a horse in “Blazing Saddles.”
posted by Fizz
on Oct 10, 2012 -
Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo
, one of the NFL's few vocal advocates for legalization of gay marriage, donates two tickets to his team's season opener to a Marylanders for Marriage Equality fundraiser. Maryland state delegate Emmet C. Burns
asking Ravens management to silence Ayanbadejo. Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe responds
with epic smackdown.
posted by googly
on Sep 7, 2012 -
"Garrett Reid, the oldest son of Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid, was found dead Sunday morning in his room at training camp at Lehigh University."
Garrett's legal troubles
and struggle with addiction
were widely publicized over the years due to his high profile father. After leaving prison he fought hard to change this legacy and was employed as a trainer with the team at the time of his death.
"Garrett’s road through life was not always an easy one. He faced tremendous personal challenges with bravery and spirit. As a family, we stood by him and were inspired as he worked to overcome those challenges. Even though he lost the battle that has been ongoing for the last eight years, we will always remember him as a fighter who had a huge, loving heart."
posted by furiousxgeorge
on Aug 7, 2012 -
Terrell Owens's Darkest Days
'Since signing with the Allen Wranglers, Terrell Owens hasn't exactly been excited to talk to reporters. Back in his Philadelphia days, in the prime of his career, he used to hold press conferences all the time, sometimes in his own driveway. He couldn't wait to be on camera. He would tell reporters what questions to ask. He never shied away from a microphone: not in a locker room, not in a studio, and certainly not on his own reality show. But now that he's been relegated to the lowest rung of professional football, with no team in the NFL even interested in watching him work out, Owens hasn't been so loquacious. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Jun 24, 2012 -
The game that you fell in love with as a child will seem lost; a thump on the floorboard of your new Mercedes, swerved at high speeds to avoid a shadow in the night. The sights and sounds and smells of football, sensual memories that stir the passions in the soul, will be reconceived and recategorized, buried behind newer, odorless versions.
Former Bronco Nate Jackson offers wisdom on the trappings of stardom to two young draftees
posted by swift
on May 1, 2012 -
Joe Posnanski asks why football fans aren't fazed by the news that the New Orleans Saints had a bounty pool to reward players who knocked opponents out of their games.
If pitchers were offered bounties to throw at Albert Pujols' head and knock him out for a series, that would be a scandal beyond anything in memory. If we found out that Dwyane Wade was actually offered extra money to hurt Kobe Bryant in the NBA All-Star Game, he and the people offering the bounty might be suspended for life. Hockey is a violent sport, but if a team of players and coached really had pooled together money to pay anyone who could get Sidney Crosby taken off on a stretcher, wouldn't that be one of the great disgraces in the sport's history?
So what does it say about the NFL -- and what does it say about us as football fans -- that this would happen in pro football and there would be a vague, "Eh, everybody does it, everybody's trying to hurt everybody in football anyway" reaction from so many?
posted by benbenson
on Mar 5, 2012 -
Does Football have a Future?
: Football players are anywhere from five to nineteen times more likely than a member of the general population to suffer from a dementia-like illness. This is likely a result of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy
), neurodegeneration caused by receiving multiple concussions or even subconcussions that are not detectable around time of impact. CTE has been linked to other mood and behavior changes, including suicidal depression (a great review of the medical literature generally),
and has been found in football players as young as 21
. And, of course, there is the sometimes debilitating physical disability (either acutely or later in life) from playing a hard-contact sport. The NFL has a long history of adjusting safety standards in bits and pieces (e.g., legalization of the forward pass
) to meet public concern over potential injury and disability from playing the sport, though still to some degree publicly denies a connection between football and brain damage
. New Yorker writer Ben McGrath
talks to football players (past and present), their families (often left behind by untimely death or dementia-twilight), franchise heads, and doctors to explore this history, the crushing legacy of sports injuries, and the question of whether it is possible to reform the rules to minimize the risk of concussion and thus the risk of CTE (if any such risk is acceptable). Would it still be football if such changes were to tone down the violence? (Yes, No [from iconoclast Buzz Bissinger]
) And, uncomfortably: is the sport of football unethical for its players, even if entered into on their own volition? (previously in the New Yorker
; previously on MetaFilter 1, 2, 3
) [more inside]
posted by Keter
on Feb 13, 2012 -
Green Bay Packers Yearbooks
from the (Vince) Lombardi Era (1960-1967). The yearbooks here
are from the team's return to glory under Lombardi. Arriving in 1959, Lombardi led the Packers to their first winning season in eleven years in his first year as coach. From that auspicious start, Lombardi's Packers had nine winning seasons and claimed five NFL championships in the 1960s. Each yearbook contains roughly 80 pages of text and photos.
posted by cashman
on Jan 29, 2011 -
The absurd amount of over-laughing that occurs during NFL Pregame Shows has long been a cliche. The Wall Street Journal recently calculated
that one show spent 2 minutes and 22 seconds, or 11.6% of its length, laughing. But this
recent video may be the defining moment of the trend, raising over-laughing to an art form.
posted by JoeGoblin
on Jan 14, 2011 -
In 1974, a Cleveland Browns season ticket holder was frustrated with a new fad of throwing paper airplanes in the stadium, and wrote to the Browns to let them know. The Brown's response
likely failed to alleviate his concerns.
posted by CharlieSue
on Dec 22, 2010 -
Malcolm Gladwell did an article about this in the New Yorker, but this GQ article
shows the opposition the researchers who discovered CTE faced from the NFL.
posted by reenum
on Dec 19, 2009 -