Yeah, I read Rosenthal’s blurb based on Jason Cole’s report regarding the reluctance of the Bears and the Rams’ coaching staffs to play the Hall of Fame game with fewer than two weeks of camp to prepare for it. Yeah, I realize that the two teams aren’t thrilled about the prospect of having to slap together preparations for the preseason opener.
But the NFL and the NFLPA* don’t care.
As an unnamed coach told Cole, “The decision is probably going to be made for us.” And the unnamed coach is right.
It’s a meaningless glorified practice, in which the starters make only a limited appearance. If the Bears and Rams have a week or less to get ready, they’ll have to get ready in that week or less. The AFC and NFC all-star teams do it every year, even though many of the players haven’t practiced or played in several weeks.
If there’s any way to save the box office receipts and, more importantly, the NBC money, the league will get the game played. And the Bears’ and Rams’ coaches can grumble all they want.
Like the unnamed coach said, the decision will be made for them. And if the lockout officially ends by August 1, the decision undoubtedly will be to play the game.