Friday, September 10, 2010

the return of the nfl.

I'm a little late with my Alibi article this week, but I can pretend like I was waiting for last night's game. We all know that's a lie, though, because I don't care about football at all. But, it's a handy excuse. Also, I have to thank my man Joey and his Twitter account for the opening angle that plays throughout. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

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America is a super religious nation. No matter what the Constitution says about the separation of church and state, we find a way to let belief into our everyday thoughts in a startlingly high number of ways. And there is no greater religion in America than the worship of football.

The football season officially began last night, amidst the more-obscured actual religious backgrounds of Rosh Hashanah and Ramadan. While some people were fasting, or just breaking that fast, the majority of the nation was taking in the sights and sounds of the Vikings and the Saints mauling one another.

The New Orleans Saints played host to the Minnesota Vikings, in a rematch of last year's NFC Championship Game. The Saints had a magical season last year, which culminated in a Super Bowl victory. Drew Brees, quarterback for the Saints, completed 27 of 36 passes for 237 yards and one touchdown, as the Saints won 14-9.

The football season begins in earnest now, with the meaningless preseason games out of the way. A full slate of games begins on Sunday at 11 in the morning, with the Denver Broncos taking on the Jacksonville Jaguars. The schedule ends with the Dallas Cowboys playing the Washington Redskins in a game that begins at 6:30 in the evening.

And just like that, America's got its true national pastime back. While baseball may have occupied that territory early in the last century, it's clear from the religious fervor that adorns even the commercials for the NFL that the attitude has shifted. Fantasy football is almost as big as the actual games, and the Super Bowl remains the biggest TV draw in the U.S. It remains to be seen if that attitude will shift again in the future, but for now football remains king and football is back.

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