The PJ Tatler

Time to Disband the National Football League

First of all, it’s a complete waste of a grownup’s time and money. Second, it’s boring. Third, it’s dangerous. And fourth:

Former San Francisco 49ers running back Lawrence Phillips is suspected of killing his cellmate in a Central California prison. Prison officials said Monday that Phillips’ cellmate at Kern Valley State Prison was found lifeless over the weekend and later pronounced dead.

Phillips, 39, was once one of the nation’s top college football players at Nebraska. Aside from the 49ers, Phillips also played for the St. Louis Rams and the Miami Dolphins in the NFL. He also played in NFL Europe, the Arena Football League and the Canadian Football League.

Phillips was considered by many the best overall player heading into the NFL 1996 draft, but he fell to the Rams with the number six pick following his suspension for an alleged assault on his girlfriend. His career was marked by frequent run-ins with coaches and off-field problems, including accusations of assault and brief stays in jail.

And fifth:

Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez looked on impassively Wednesday as he was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole, a new low for a young man who once enjoyed a $40 million pro-football contract and now stands convicted in the 2013 murder of onetime friend Odin Lloyd.

Hernandez, 25, appeared to shake his head “no” earlier as jurors in the Massachusetts trial found him guilty of first-degree murder. He was also found guilty of unlawful possession of a firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition.

“They got it wrong,” Hernandez said as he was being transported from the courthouse to a state prison, according to a law enforcement source close to the case. “I didn’t do it.”

Back in 1976, Chuck Noll, then the head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers, referred to a “criminal element” in the NFL. Two years later, this happened:

It’s been all downhill since. As the old saying goes, is the game worth the candle?