Football Has Plenty Of Action

by Wells

A lot has been made of this Wall Street Journal article that told the world that the average football game only has 11 minutes of action.  I actually don’t care that I’m watching a lot of players just stand around because:

  1. Baseball exists.
  2. Football plays are often executed so quickly that replays are necessary to watch the action more intently or from more angles.
  3. I just don’t.  Given the choice between football where something really happens once every 40 seconds, or some awful TMZ ripoff or shitty judge show where nothing ever happens, I’ll take football.
  4. The game itself is so well-balanced.  If you decreased the play clock or kept the game clock running after every play, the change in strategy and tactics would not only be significant, it’d also be rushed and dangerous (well, okay, more dangerous) for the players.  Football has a rhythm.  The downtime between short bursts of activity raises the stakes of those bursts.  You wait and wait for  your team’s one more chance to make things better for themselves and then it comes and you’re invested.  Yeah, if I had to sit and watch just the downtime from a football game it’d be boring.  But as it is, it serves a useful purpose.  It’s like music; you need the rests.