Of all the PR problems out there right now, the NFL may have the biggest. Their players foolishly picked the wrong symbol to protest and the result can be seen each week. So the story about Buffalo Bills fans donating money to the Bengals QB’s foundation as a thank you for throwing a late touchdown pass to beat the Ravens, thus putting the Bills in the playoffs, is exactly what the league needs.
All the positive PR from this story could help the NFL bounce back, and right at playoff time is the best time.
This is coming right after the league chose not to have a game in primetime. They said it was because of a BS reason about the playoffs being set, but the real reason is they would have embarrassed themselves in ratings against much more appealing options as it was New Year’s Eve. No chance the league voluntarily chose to turndown primetime TV ad money; they wisely saved face by pulling the plug.
But note- the goodwill and positive message from the Bills story exclusively comes from the fans, not the league or even the players (with maybe the exception of the Bengals QB simply because he has a foundation set up). The league did nothing, but they will benefit. So down the road when we look back on NFL players’ baffling choice of protest give the league no quarter because the fans saved them, not the league, not the players, it was the fans. Funny how monopolies stay intact. Play on, gentlemen.