We've been told several times already that the National Felons League is a very "important cultural iconic institution' in America. But at what price do we continue to pay for that kind of talk that is only suitable for delusional mental patients? Do we have to accept, venerate, and tolerate the Felons' continuing misogyny, child-hating, women-beating, hyper-masculine, brain damaging, homophobic attitudes against the people of this country?
No. The NFL is beginning to crack and I would go further by saying that the NFL is already damaged goods.
USA Today had a very good piece on the already damaged "iconic" image of the NFL and football in general:
"We're beginning to see cracks in the shield," said Jason Maloni, who specializes in crisis communications at Levick, a public relations firm in Washington, D.C. "They may be faint cracks, but they deserve a great deal of attention, because faint cracks always become larger cracks."
"Athletes have been crossing the line for many, many years," Maloni said. "What's new is the echo chamber (of social media). What's new is visceral pictures and videos on the Internet. I imagine a player of Adrian Peterson's stature might have gotten him a pass (from the league) before, but the pictures of his child's injuries make it a lot more vivid for everybody."
But experts say the league's popularity could wane if it doesn't make changes in response to the crises, not only in handling misconduct but also player safety and concussions.
Adding to the bonfire, court documents released last week showed the NFL itself estimated nearly one-third of former players would suffer from neurocognitive problems stemming from brain damage.
Such knowledge could have a profound effect on whether parents allow their children to play or watch football, impacting the game's future popularity.
"When you know the likelihood of those kinds of injuries, it makes you step back," said Ann Bastianelli, senior lecturer of marketing at Indiana University.
To decrease the risk of brain damage, the league might have to take away or limit a marketing asset that helps make it popular — brain-rattling collisions.
"It's their point of greatest vulnerability," sports economist Andrew Zimbalist told USA TODAY Sports. "This latest report is sufficiently scary that something dramatic has to be done."
The answer may be that, even two years later, it's a different world. Without repairs, those cracks in the NFL shield will only spread. And then fans may start asking themselves an important question, Bastianelli said:
"At what cost do we want to continue to watch this?"