Players seem to insist on banging the back or sides of a player’s helmet in what appears to be a volcanic release of pent-up testosterone. Tony DiNozzo on “NCIS” gets head-slapped fewer times than a wide receiver in the NFL.
The NFL playoffs and Super Bowl will soon dominate television, mobile devices and virtually anything that sports an LCD screen. I therefore deem this an appropriate time to vent my pet peeves as a longtime NFL watcher.
First, one would think that with all the concern about concussions in football these days that players would stop giving blows to the head to their teammates after a good play. Players seem to insist on banging the back or sides of a player’s helmet in what appears to be a volcanic release of pent-up testosterone. Tony DiNozzo on “NCIS” gets head-slapped fewer times than a wide receiver in the NFL.
With all the slaps from teammates and the pounding suffered by players foolish enough to jump into the stands in a so-called Lambeau Leap, the end zone may be more dangerous after a play than when the clock is running.
Perhaps even worse than the head slap is the head-to-head grill bump. Picture two rams butting each other over disputed terrain and that would approximate the facemask butt.
These mini-concussive events seem to have increased ever since high fives became low fives. Also, the current jack-in-the-box jump in which players jump up, turn and bang against each other’s sides may be an improvement over the previously in-vogue chest bump.
I blame the army of camera people who record every molecule of movement on the sidelines. In fact, I think there is more filming of the fans, the coaches and the trainers than there are images of football players actually playing football.
I am at a lost as to why camera people follow an injured player to the training table where trainers administer medical treatments that used to be done behind closed doors. I have seen everything but a defibrillator blast captured on video.
Also, do we really need to see a player grimacing as his torn muscle starts to spasm out of control? One wonders how players could possibly get away with injecting or ingesting anything illegal when they are on camera virtually 20 hours a day. (I know it’s those four unaccounted for hours that provide the opportunity.)
The process of updating with scores and highlights from games in different time zones has become completely disruptive. Many times the network station will break away to some game in a galaxy far away between two last-placed teams. With so many interruptions, viewers lose track of the games they are actually watching. Making it even more difficult are the vintage uniforms they wear with the baggy shirts and monochrome helmets.
I am suspicious of the signs that fans hold up, which seem to have been professionally created and that praise the broadcasters by first name or that make dumb puns from the three TV network letters.
I am also tired of the shots of shirtless fans in frigid Green Bay and of cheerleaders wearing face paintings of cute little animals.
I hope the moving cameras lock on the cables overhanging the field and that we just get images of teams playing on the field. Of course, we’ll still have to endure the helmet slaps. But, hey, football is a contact sport, not a game of canasta.
Peter Costa is a senior editor with GateHouse Media New England and is the author of two books of humor. His latest, “Outrageous CostaLiving: Still Laughing Through Life,” is available at amazon.com.