I wrote this back in November 1993, after the Cleveland Browns released Bernie Kosar. He was the starting quarterback and, if I remember correctly, the most popular Brown since Jim Brown.
He and Bill Bellichek, then the Browns' head coach, were at odds. Bellichek wanted to control the offense, while Kosar wanted to do it.
I noted that as the death of individualism in professional football, and predicted that it would fade as a spectator sport because machine precision and violence would dominate the game.
Now 16 plus years later, the NFL is bigger than ever.
I liked the sport then and still do, mostly because I love to watch the patterns happen on the field during an individual play. Also, one of my dreams was to be a great halfback. But that never happened. I don't regret it, at least consciously. Whether I have a small regret unconsciously about it, I don't know. At least it doesn't break through to my consciousness.
A month later, I wrote this in my journal:
Pro football is not a microcosm of life any more than it's a symbol of war or peace or your Aunt Fannie's Pekinese pup. There are poetic types who can find a microcosm of life in a slice of cheese on a china plate, and if that helps them get through the day,l more power to them. But pro football is pro football and life is whatever the hell it is.
It's by Bob Carroll, from his book When the Grass Was Real: A History of the NFL and AFL.