It was in 2016 that the national anthem protests were started in the NFL. Since then there has been a steady decline in viewership. The NFL was recently the most positively viewed professional sport followed up by the Professional baseball and basketball. That is no longer the case. It has fallen to third amongst the ranking selection.
This does not bode well for player salaries. The league average has continued to increase in the years leading up to this drastic fall off. The individuals at the top end of the players salaries, such as the quarterback in many cases, continue to break records for contracts being the largest of all time… It is funny when those same players that have used the American Dream system to play a game into wealth beyond measure in many cases turn their back on that same system through this symbol of disrespect.
In 2016 Colin Kaepernick decided that he would kick off the protest by featuring the image of a police officer as a pig. He then proceeded to sit down on the bench for the national anthem. He did that until someone explained how bad it was. At that point he decided to take a knee while the national anthem played. Some say this is much better but I disagree. Many people feel that the player should feel free to voice their opinion without fear of retribution. I can see your point with that with that. However, they are costing their boss money & in turn, also costing other players money.
The simple fact is that freedom of speech is not protected at work. Another fact is that people who watch the NFL can choose to turn it off without fear of retribution. Should these very few, very disrespectful people be allowed to continue their protest when it costs so many people so much? I do not think so. I was an avid watcher of the NFL. I Loved The Niners but I watched several games weekly.
Since then the problem has taken on a life of it’s own. Viewership is down nearly 15% (20% or 4 million viewers by some accounts) & when you are talking about a $14 billion a year business that translates into a pretty penny to say the least. That is around a $2 billion dollar loss per year. That would be fine if it was just 1 year but we are now ending the 2nd straight season of protests with no end in sight. I for 1 will never watch another NFL game until there is not 1 NFL player disrespecting my flag.
It’s not just the viewership either. My wife and I would regularly spend money on clothes, jerseys, collectables and other merchandise that reflected our team.