When the Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots won their respective championship games, it marked the end of the season. Football, as the gladiator sports we pretend that it is, would undergo a transformation into a chaotic mess of interviews, parties, concerts... money, money, money, money and more money. The Super Bowl has grown into an event that eliminates lower class fans and puts strain on the declining middle class, the Super Bowl has left us behind. Us... being fans of the gladiator sport and not the pompousness that encapsulates it.
Last Sunday it was about the league's all-stars and mostly our own scorn. We hate the Pro Bowl and there's nothing anyone can do to make it better. It is what it is. So move on. Monday and Tuesday are media events, parties for the media to praise the media. There's social events with red carpet entrances and massive productions to flood the market and the pockets of private entrepreneurs late in the week, while Glendale foots the bill to make it all safe and secure.
"If you look at the big picture, this is a huge event for the state and we don't want to discount that," Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers told Bruce St. James and Pamela Hughes on Thursday. "We don't want to embarrass or tarnish the Super Bowl's reputation as far as an event that people love. At the same time, I don't want my city to be footing the bill for public safety."
The NFL has turned into a circus, especially during media day where players answer softball questions in a sport that demands hard answers. I'm just kidding. It's not really that poetic. It's just... chill. Whatever.
I'm a big fan if Super Bowl media day. Perfectly ridiculous. pic.twitter.com/LLocLHE3q8— Dan Wetzel (@DanWetzel) January 27, 2015
It's a roast of the media, an orgy of self-glorification and selfies. It's the media telling you that it's their day and the players, coaches and teams, while part of the story, are more Jar Jar Binks than Anakin Skywalker. Based on their Tweets, twits, and general reports in Phoenix, we could have told the players to leave and nothing would have changed.
There is Marshawn Lynch, who currently plays the role of disgruntled interviewee, just going through the motions so he won't get fined. Great, whatever... If the NFL isn't going to hold people accountable, why should anyone care what they want? The media eats it up, aware of the antagonistic role and continues to play along with it.
For five minutes, Lynch repeated "I'm just here so I won't get fined". It's hilarious, that rebel-rouser. For 24 hours, Lynch challenged the NFL after Patriots owner Bob Kraft challenged the league on Monday night, demanding an apology if nothing is presented in deflategate. The only difference is, Kraft believes that the NFL works for him... and he's not entirely wrong.
SB Nation's Zito Madu argues:
OK, but here's a counterpoint: this is not his job. His job is to be the running back for the Seattle Seahawks. Media Day is just another circle-jerk event for the NFL to profit from and media to gather.
No. Media day is a day for the media to entertain themselves while players exhibit the awkwardness of being at a party that they don't belong to. If answering random questions weren't part of Lynch's job -- and they're easy questions that allow players to coast through reliable talking points -- then he wouldn't be fined nor would he be required to do it. Defending Lynch is fine. Asking why it's required is fine. If the league wants to end interviews, fine. In an age of social media and bloggers who sprout like zits on a teenager's face, the fan/player connection is as close as it's ever been. Players say nothing to the media, anyway. There's nothing gained here.
And the irony of the Lynch storyline is that he's actually become a desirable destination because of his responses. People want to interview him now and are fighting other reporters to break through the barrier that separates child from adult. This is Chad Johnson all over again... but different. Had he just answered his questions from the start, most people would have left him alone. It's not like players of the 21st century give interesting interviews anymore. There's too much money lost for the wrong comment. Everyone is just better off shutting up.
Maybe it's just my declining view of the Super Bowl that makes me want to bash it like antibodies in a diseased body. Well, your opinion would change if the Bengals were in it. Of course it would. Don't be stupid. The loss to Indianapolis is still raw. I was hoping for an Andy Dalton moment at the Pro Bowl so that he would look good.
There will be football soon. We can mute the static noise and re-focus on our gladiator sport.