Lockout. Such a gloomy, mournful word.
Over the past three months, we’ve been rattled with this word and all the agony that accompanies it. Every evening we watch Sportscenter, patiently sit through a story about Derek Jeter’s leg, and hope that there will be a story about how a minuscule amount of optimism has somehow presented itself in the NFL labor talks.
Instead, we hear about DeMaurice Smith meeting with the players and lawyers, lawyers meeting with Goodell, Goodell meeting with the owners, owners meeting with other owners in private jets, NFLPA meeting with the NFL, and Manning secretly meeting with Gisele. You see, the lockout has fans going absolutely delirious as they find a place for their latest Fathead.
All of this gridiron turmoil will force us, the fans, to look at ourselves and realize how forgiving we really are. When the lockout so rudely came into our lives, some fans said they would boycott the NFL, even after the lockout had come to a conclusion. That means no more merchandise, no more tickets, no more watching the game on television. Although I believe a boycott of the NFL would never actualize, I certainly know that the fans here in St. Louis would be quick to forgive and forget.
There’s so much hype about this upcoming season for the Rams. When this lockout ends, Rams fans won’t care how it transpired. They won’t care if the players harness their demands, the owners grow a heart, or if DeMaurice Smith and Art Rooney mud wrestle. Whichever it is, Rams fans have so much to be excited about when the upcoming season commences. It all starts with Bradford, who from all accounts has taken control of this team. And if it were possible to draw any conclusions from a couple rain-soaked practices at Lindenwood University, I’d have to agree.
When the inferno that is the lockout is extinguished, Rams fans will converge toward the Edward Jones Dome. Labor negotiations will be an afterthought, and the only angst will be to finish that last beer before you walk through the turnstile, settle in your plastic throne, and watch Sam and the boys do something special.