When Is The NFL Going To Stop Calling Them Preseason GAMES?

Twenty-two men on the field during the preseason do not constitute a game. It is barely a glorified practice session for coaches to identify a few players that they think ought to be added to their depth chart, while for the owners it’s just an occasion to add some bonus coins to their pots of gold.

The preseason is not a time when coaches experiment with new plays or strategies. Indeed it is a time when coaches try and hide the real team as much as possible so it doesn’t get hurt.

Last night the Super Bowl champs, the Philadelphia EAGLES, lost 5–0 to the Cleveland Browns, a team that has won just one game in the last two years — really! Not really, but really.

A random assortment of men in green (missing many starters), with no game plan, scrimmaged against a bunch of men in orange. It didn’t matter if the score was 5 zip or 500 zip. The outcome tells us nothing about either team, but sometimes it says reams about a few individual players. Yet for a football nut like me there is a sort of reason to watch individual players, but, still, I never care about what the mob of players does as a group, many who will never play in a real NFL game. It is just a chance for me to see a slightly more formal tryout for some marginal players.

On the other hand, if the Eagles don’t win a single preseason scrimmage, you might want to use these goings on as a fine opportunity to place a bet on the EAGLES to win another Super Bowl. Go Birds!

Jim Ridgway, Jr. military writer — author of the American Civil War classic, “Apprentice Killers: The War of Lincoln and Davis.” Christmas gift, yes!

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