NFL '17 Season Has Themes Of Widespread Parity, As Well As Lost Star Power To Injuries
The NFL's "extreme parity this season leaves us without even one great team," something that is "great" for the league's overall product, according to Frank Schwab of YAHOO SPORTS. The fact that "everything changes from week to week" is not a "knock on the league." It means that every game has "intrigue." Schwab: "If you prefer parity, the NFL in 2017 is your league. ... But if you're looking for your Golden State Warriors of this NFL season, you’ll be looking for a while" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 10/17). However, THE RINGER's Kevin Clark wrote the '17 season so far has been "defined by widespread mediocrity." No one "is perfect, no one is even great, and it may stay that way." Clark: "Could it just be a blip and might we be watching the same old faces come January? Sure, but what’s more likely is that a number of on- and off-field factors have converged to push and pull more teams toward the middle." Whether or not the NFL "genuinely wants it is another question altogether." The NFL has "long held the view that parity is a good thing and that 'anything can happen on Sunday' is the reason fans tune in every weekend. However, there is "no clear consensus on what fans across sports prefer." MLB's ratings "tend to dip when the Yankees aren’t involved." The Bulls of the '90s "brought in record Finals ratings," while the current Warriors have "brought with them ratings not seen" since the early-'00s Lakers (THERINGER.com, 10/17). In Seattle, Bob Condotta notes this "might be the most parity-driven NFL season ever." Condotta: "Exhibit A might have been the victory by the previously-winless New York Giants ... at what was a one-loss Denver team, a win in which the Giants simply dominated from the start in what ended as a 23-10 drubbing of the Broncos" (SEATTLE TIMES, 10/18).
Rodgers' likely season-ending injury sapped the NFL of yet another marketable star