The NFL cracked down on violent hits last Sunday levying fines against James Harrison and Brandon Meriweather for their play. James Harrison was so distraught over the implication he's a dirty player he contemplated retirement. He was uncertain if he could continue to play football at a high level under the current rules and regulations regarding legal and illegal hits. In my opinion the league has become a little soft in response to violent contact.
I'm not saying the league should return to the days of Jack Tatum paralyzing people or horse collar tackles that result in torn knee ligaments, but there has to be a compromise. As it stands right now quarterbacks and receivers are barely allowed to be touched anyway. It's not good business for star players to watch from the sidelines. The quarterback is the most important position and big play receivers make them look good. You can't have one without the other.
I'm speaking from a fans perspective of course, but when I break this whole situation down I can't help but think of Lawrence Taylor's character Shark from the movie On Any Given Sunday. Left to their own definition of right and wrong players will beat each others brains out and risk permanent damage to their bodies in the process.
The league may be turning soft, but isn't that because the NFL is thinking about the player's well being after football? Is it me or is Ray Lewis starting to slur his words a little bit? In the end the NFL is protecting the players from themselves and the players (and fans alike) will have to realize it's for their own good. In addition, there's more money to be made. How else would the the league make it through a proposed 18 game season? The NFL has to protect its investment somehow right? Ultimately the NFL is doing the right thing for purely selfish reasons. Go figure.