It’s wholly possible that America’s football fan base is in the process of witnessing an evolution within the NFL. Even in the face of Baltimore Ravens’ Quarterback, Joe Flacco, being signed to the largest contract in National Football League history, the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) and its subsequent salary cap for franchises reached in the 2011 off-season may be challenging players, specifically quarterbacks, to re-think an institutionalized business aspect of the game.
One of the largest turn-offs to both fans and critics of professional sports alike is when athletes discuss six-digit contracts in negative lights or as if it’s not enough. Several of the sound-bites from Joe Flacco’s press conference are perfect examples of this originating from a very benign and otherwise blue collar individual. When asked why he didn’t sign a very reasonable deal from the Ravens in early 2012, Flacco responded,
I thought I was worth more…”
When questioned if he had any immediate plans for his new fortune,
Nothing immediately… hopefully not much… I’m just going to look at it, and like I said, be able to smile a little bit…”
Most profoundly, when asked about the risk verses reward of holding out after the 2012 franchise tag was placed on him, Flacco digressed to this statement…
…When guys that are drafted in the first round, when guys that win football games for you, quarterbacks like that, when the time comes up for those guys to get paid, they usually become the highest paid guy in the league. I’m sure in a couple of months from now, someone is going to sign a deal, and you guys are going to be talking to them about how they are the highest paid guy in NFL history. That’s just the name of the game. I know that this isn’t going to hold up for that long, but that’s not a priority of mine to be the highest-paid guy. The priority of mine was to get that respect that I felt, that I feel now from this organization.”