Illustration by Aaron Hadley Dana
It seems like the NFL is just sort of showboating sometimes. For all its intense self-seriousness and vigorous brand-boosting, the NFL also has to know at this point that it can more or less coast—that people will pretty much watch anything that looks like a NFL game, even if it involves the Jacksonville Jaguas before breakfast or the Cleveland Browns in primetime. They know that they can get away with this, and if it seems like they know this, and maybe are even playing a game to see how much they can get away with, it's probably more likely that they just do not care much about it. This is always the likeliest outcome where the NFL is concerned.
This knowledge of its own imperviousness does not mean that the NFL will ever stop going in; it will never stop going in, in the most Sociopathic Prep School Capitalist sense of "going in." But it does mean that it can sort of coast a little bit, and do things like put the smoking husk of the Dallas Cowboys and the national blight that is the Washington R*dskins on national TV, right where everyone can see them, on a Monday night that features no other NFL games. What are you going to do, not watch it?
No, you might well want to watch it. It's a football game, and Washington could somehow win the NFC East this year—it's a testament to how horrific the division is that the 3-8 Cowboys could somehow win it, too—and it's Monday night. But there is a right way and a wrong way to watch it. The right way, we would humbly submit, would be to sort of watch it, and mostly listen to Footballz as the game goes on. Mac and Chris—and TD, who will likely call in later in the evening—will keep you posted on the goings-on, without ever once saying something that Jon Gruden would've said. They will, too, have the graciousness to steer away from NFC East talk when there are jokes or songs that would be more enjoyable. Probably a lot.
So: this is where we are, and what the NFL is giving us. Let us make the best of it, together. Let us take back as much of it as can, here and at Footballz.org, right around game time. Dammit, we have to do something!
And chat it up here, as needed.