Over the last few years there have been plenty of complaints from fans and players alike that the NFL is starting to go soft on us. Not only are you not allowed to shoot up strip clubs anymore — damn you, Roger Goodell! — but you can’t kill anybody on the field either. It’s a tough situation. Players and fans want there to be more violence, while the commissioner and the owners want to protect those players and their investments. Surely there has to be a happy medium between the two sides, and there is only one man who can find it.
Yes, that man is Da Coach, Mike Ditka. Iron Mike was at his alma mater, the University of Pittsburgh, on Wednesday and he let his feelings be known on the subject.
From the PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE:
“I said a long time ago if you want to change the game take the mask off the helmet,” he said. “It will change the game a lot. If you want to change the game and get it back to where people aren’t striking with the head and using the head as a weapon, take the mask off the helmet.
“A lot of pretty boys aren’t going to stick their face in there. If you’re going to take hitting out of football, you might as well just call it soccer. That’s what I believe. A lot of people will be disappointed I said that, but football is what it is. [Vince] Lombardi said it a long time ago. Football is not a contact game. Dancing is a contact game. Football is a collision sport.”
Not only will removing the facemask off of the helmets reduce spearing, it will also increase broken faces by 2,000%, and that can’t be a bad thing.
While they’re at it, why don’t they just stop wearing pads all together? When I play football with my friends, we don’t have pads on, and we’re literally trying to kill each other. Sure, there are a few scrapes and bruises from playing this way, but since high school we’ve only had two broken legs, a dislocated shoulder, and no torn ACLs.
The NFL can’t say that.