It’s Our Monday Blog, so let’s dive right in!
Over the weekend, I spent some time watching the NFL draft. The draft might not be that exciting to you, but there were some interesting side stories.
When I turned the draft on at the very beginning, I saw several former Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks walking out with the Commissioner. Because the draft took place in Dallas, this immediately should have evoked cheers because of all Dallas fans.
In theory, it was a great idea because the NFL was probably trying to run a good defense for Commissioner Goodell. But, fans so dislike Goodell that even greats from the past could not run positive interference for him. But, it was a classic public relations move.
The NFL is known to try for public relations moves to make us forget that it’s all big business. They would prefer that we not remember all those past players still suffering from head injuries.
For instance, Ryan Shazier walked to the podium to announce the Pittsburgh Steelers’ first pick. Four years ago he had been a first round pick. Near the end of last season, he suffered a spinal injury during a game that was so serious that it was questionable whether he would be paralyzed for life.
Now, we are celebrating his ability to walk, even though it is with incredible effort on his part. Maybe the best way that the NFL can give recognition to him is not to parade him across a stage. Instead, to make sure that all is done to make sure it never happens to another player.
Draftee Shaquem Griffin was placed in the draft room. The player area usually reserved for players to be drafted in the first round. There is no way that the NFL expected that. But with Griffin there, they could continually show him to TV viewers.
We were constantly reminded that he only had one hand as a result of a birth defect. Yet, his story served as an inspiration to overcoming adversity… while he sat there until being drafted in the fifth round. He was the 141st player to be taken.
During the draft, television viewers were also sent to the “draft war rooms” of several teams. It showed the team of people determining the player to be picked. It also showed the importance of all the preparation done before the draft. Their big “draft boards” gave structure to who they would pick next, if available. It doesn’t just happen.
One final thought is on how the draft started in the first place. It stems from the theory that “it’s not fair”.
During the 1930’s, Philadelphia team owner, Bert Bell, was tired of his team continually losing. He pitched the other owners on an idea of spreading the wealth. All ships big and small rise to the top as the tide goes up! The league is only as strong as its weakest link. (I could keep going crazy on metaphors!)
The draft of today was created, using the reverse order of picking in order of finish. Last picks first was born. And so it was in this 2018 draft.
And for pic o’ day: