News

ICYMI: NFL’s Protesters Didn’t Make the Playoffs

“NBC plans to televise any players who refuse to stand for “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the Super Bowl, but there may be nothing to show,” reports The Washington Times.

After two seasons of controversy, only twenty players remained engaged in the national anthem protests on five different National Football League teams. However, none of those teams qualified for postseason play.

From the article:

Sports psychologist John F. Murray emphasized that it would be impossible to quantify the impact on individual teams but said it stands to reason that the high-profile protests could have disrupted locker-room unity.

“As a sports psychologist, if my mission is to help a team play better, I see it as a distraction,” said Mr. Murray, who is based in Palm Beach, Florida, and has worked with NFL players.

He said teams should expect problems if players perceive that their teammates are “putting a social agenda above the mission” of winning games.

“As a sports psychologist, if my mission is to help a team play better, I see it as a distraction,” said Mr. Murray, who is based in Palm Beach, Florida, and has worked with NFL players.

He said teams should expect problems if players perceive that their teammates are “putting a social agenda above the mission” of winning games.

“I work with athletes, and I’m very sensitive to the impact of even a slight disruption in team unity,” said Mr. Murray. “I think that would certainly be a possibility. If you’ve got some people who are strongly against that and some people who aren’t, you’re putting that issue in the way of going out there and performing well.”

 

NBC, the network that will broadcast this year’s Super Bowl game, had recently promised to cover any protests that might occur during the pregame ceremonies.

On the other hand, after a tumultuous season that has resulted in the NFL becoming the most unpopular sports organization in America, the league may be relieved by the prospect of a controversy free Super Bowl. But, that doesn’t mean the impact won’t be felt for in future months.

A spokesman for 2ndVote was quoted explaining what the NFL faces from a business standpoint:

A lack of protests in the postseason may be better for the league’s public image, but the long-term damage will be felt as sponsors negotiate their advertising deals for the next season. Advertisers are likely to demand lower prices because of the loss of viewership.

Studies showed a 10% drop in viewership ratings for the 2017 NFL season compared to the previous year, which means a significant loss of advertising value to sponsors.

Read the entire article from The Washington Times here.

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