What Would the End of Football Concussions in the nfl essay Like? An economic perspective on CTE and the concussion crisis. 1 0 0 1 22. NFL is done for the year, but it is not pure fantasy to suggest that it may be done for good in the not-too-distant future.
How might such a doomsday scenario play out and what would be the economic and social consequences? By now we’re all familiar with the growing phenomenon of head injuries and cognitive problems among football players, even at the high school level. Before you say that football is far too big to ever disappear, consider the history: If you look at the stocks in the Fortune 500 from 1983, for example, 40 percent of those companies no longer exist. The original version of Napster no longer exists, largely because of lawsuits. No matter how well a business matches economic conditions at one point in time, it’s not a lock to be a leader in the future, and that is true for the NFL too.
Sports are not immune to these pressures. In the first half of the 20th century, the three big sports were baseball, boxing, and horse racing, and today only one of those is still a marquee attraction. The most plausible route to the death of football starts with liability suits. Precollegiate football is already sustaining 90,000 or more concussions each year. If ex-players start winning judgments, insurance companies might cease to insure colleges and high schools against football-related lawsuits. Coaches, team physicians, and referees would become increasingly nervous about their financial exposure in our litigious society.
2 million lawsuit at any point in time. A lot of people will see it as easier to just stay away. We have seen such domino effects with the risks of smoking or driving without seatbelts, two unsafe practices that were common in the 1960s but are much rarer today. The end result is that the NFL’s feeder system would dry up and advertisers and networks would shy away from associating with the league, owing to adverse publicity and some chance of being named as co-defendants in future lawsuits. It may not matter that the losses from these lawsuits are much smaller than the total revenue from the sport as a whole. That means just about everyone could be exposed to fear of legal action. This slow death march could easily take 10 to 15 years.
A couple more college players — or worse, high schoolers — commit suicide with autopsies showing CTE. 20 million to a family. A class-action suit shapes up with real legs, the NFL keeps changing its rules, but it turns out that less than concussion levels of constant head contact still produce CTE. Soon high schools decide it isn’t worth it. The Ivy League quits football, then California shuts down its participation, busting up the Pac-12.
Then the Big Ten calls it quits, followed by the East Coast schools. The socioeconomic picture of a football player becomes more homogeneous: poor, weak home life, poorly educated. Ford and Chevy pull their advertising, as does IBM and eventually the beer companies. Along the way, you would have an NFL with much lower talent levels, less training, and probably greater player representation from poorer countries, where the demand for money is higher and the demand for safety is lower. Finally, the NFL is marginalized as less-dangerous sports gobble up its market share. NFL would not actually be that large.
10 billion per year while U. But that doesn’t mean everyone would be fine. Big stadiums will lose a lot of their value and that will drag down neighboring bars and restaurants, causing a lot of them to shut their doors. Cable TV will be less profitable, and this will hasten the movement of TV-watching, if we can still call it that, to the web.