Doug Baldwin: Thursday Night Football should be illegal

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With the laundry list of players injured in Thursday night’s game between the Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals, it’s no wonder some of the players involved in the game would question the wisdom of playing two games in five days.

Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin thinks the enterprise should be banned.

This s— should be illegal,” Baldwin said, via Gregg Bell of the Tacoma News Tribune. “It is not OK. It’s not OK. You can quote me on that.

“This is not OK. … Absolutely, guys do not have enough time to recover. You can’t recover in four days.”

Baldwin was one of at least 15 players hurt or injured in the game between the two teams. The Seahawks alone had 12 different players injured in some way. Cornerback Richard Sherman (Achilles), defensive tackle Jarran Reed (hamstring), tackle Duane Brown (ankle), running back C.J. Prosise (ankle), linebacker Michael Wilhoite (calf) and defensive end Frank Clark (thigh) were all knocked out of the game and did not return.

Safety Kam Chancellor (stinger), cornerback Shaquill Griffin (shoulder), quarterback Russell Wilson (jaw/concussion check), defensive tackle Nazair Jones and Baldwin (hip/groin) all had issues arise as well that they played through.

That list doesn’t include the three Cardinals likely done for the season in tackle D.J. Humphries (knee), safety Tyvon Branch (knee) and tight end Ifeanyi Momah (ankle).

It’s Exhibit A, Exhibit B, Exhibit C, Exhibit D, Exhibit Z. Thursday night football should be illegal,” Baldwin said, via Brady Henderson of ESPN.com.

When posited with the argument from some that the extra days off following a Thursday night game might be an adequate offset for the injuries concerns, Baldwin had a simple reply.

Tell them f— you,” he said, via Matt Calkins of the Seattle Times.

“It’s amazing,” Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said with exasperation. “I hope that you guys recognize how challenging this is for the NFL players. It’s so challenging physically and they have to go through so much and they risk so much. For them to fight and claw and scratch like that… I’m talking about both teams and every team that plays this game, not just about tonight. I just hope you guys will understand how admirable it is because they love the game, and of course they’re getting paid and all, but they go through a tremendous amount. It tears your heart when it gets taken away because of injuries and all. It’s unfortunate.”

The amount of revenue the league creates from the Thursday night package likely means Thursday games aren’t going anywhere, but the concerns could likely be mitigated with some tweaks to the schedule. Adding a second bye week could give teams a week off leading into their Thursday night matchups so no teams are playing on a short week. The second bye could help facilitate scheduling international games in London as well.

While the money generated by Thursday games are a benefit for both players and owners, the risk to player safety and inherent lack of game quality from diminished rosters have created a problem that needs further addressing moving forward.

100 responses to “Doug Baldwin: Thursday Night Football should be illegal

  1. Baldwin is right but as long as there are 32 owners and a Commissioner who do not care about player safety, and us fans who are willing to watch, it will not go away.

    We would all have to boycott but if we were really going to boycott we would not post on this site.

  2. They could keep it, with minor tweaks, for basically the whole year & eliminate the short rest.
    Week 1 you have opening night on a Thursday, which is the new norm.
    Weeks 2,3,4 don’t have it Thursday games at all.
    Weeks 5 to 13 teams coming off the bye play it (Small tweak to bye weeks extending it a week out so week 8/9 or so there aren’t 6 teams off both weeks, when week before only has 2. The bye schedule is strange, I digress).
    Week 14,15,16 it moves to only Saturday games (when NCAA football has its void).
    Week 17, as is now, is strictly Sunday.
    The 3 weeks in the beginning being open won’t oversaturate the early portion of the season & staying strictly to Sat/Sun/Monday at end does the same.

  3. The NFL needs to seriously pay attention and listen to the players. Even MLB starting pitchers get 5 days off and with all due respect to them, they don’t even come close to going through what an NFL player goes through. Do away with the Thursday games except Thanksgiving which is tradition. It’s really hurting the quality of the game!

  4. Shut up, Doug. For the millions you whiners make I’d play every day if needed.

    More millionaires whining. I’m sure the protests will be starting on Sunday for this.

  5. Remember a few years ago when a lot of teams were complaining about the Lions and Cowboys getting to play on Thanksgiving every year? Any volunteers for those games now?

  6. I’m tired of hearing the million dollar cry babies complaining………….if its too hard, refuse the money and get a regular job.

  7. Won’t get no argument with me this just goes to show you how weak the players union is and this is the perfect opportunity for the players to make their FIRST stand and stand up for themselves instead of kneeling ,,,This they would have the fans on their side for but instead they turtle !

  8. I hate working everyday, my body never recover I still do it. The bills add up. Medical problems in the family add up. I keep my head up and keep woring for the family. Must be n ice to be a whiny nothing and be paid millions. Go to work kid, every working man in the world does without whining about it. OR JUST MAYBE, I can convince my employer I only work certain days, I only stand for the anthem when I feel like it, basically inmates running the system

  9. I don’t care what excuse they come up with. If they want TNF then only teams coming off a bye week should play on Thursday. Same for Thanksgiving. Easy fix, if you want to fix it that is. That said, I survived for 50 years with no TNF.

  10. When Richie Incognito said similar words last week, it was all said to be sour grapes b/c the Bills lost.

    Enter Baldwin, a big play guy in the licker room with a W. They’re both right and something should be done to fix it.

    This is an issue of player safety that needs to be addressed. Meanwhile it’s take a knee, Kaep saying he’s being blackballed, Goodelle extension, etc.

    Keep your eye on the ball, NFL!

  11. .
    You can draft all the right players. You can sign all the best free agents. But injuries are always the most important factor in deciding who gets to the Super Bowl.

    Every year preseason prognostications are rendered comical, as each week teams lose key components for the season.
    .

  12. I’d originally thought ‘well both teams are playing’ so it’s evenly matched, but as more evidence of CTE, and other injuries surface and as more players comment, I’m thinking, ‘I can live without it.’

    I don’t want to see the guys on my team, or anyone for that matter, get hurt.

  13. Can they keep this as an internal battle? Tell the owners about it. It sucks that you are getting hurt and all but I’m just getting tired of hearing players always complaining about something after every game. I’m not against them complaining but stop complaining to us. It’s not our problem.

  14. I think the idea of a second bye week preceding Thursday night or London games is a very good one. It mitigates the huge issue of insufficient time/time-zone adaptation, and it also stretches the season by one week, which is great for football fans.

    Now if we can just do something about the awful “play your game in London as the home team” crap. E.g. the Rams have played in London three times since 2012 — in each case, as the “home team.” Which means in actuality, they’ve played 7 home games and 9 road games during each of those years. It’s nuts, and totally unfair.

  15. I am not a big fan of Thursday games, but aside from that issue, I need to point something out. Sherman had a problem with his Achilles before stepping on the field today. Somebody let him play. I don’t know or care who had to sign off on it, but the responsibility ultimately lies upon Pete Carroll. Let me state this for the record, I am sure Sherman insisted he could and would play, but losing him for a few games instead of a whole season is always the right choice. There are injuries you can struggle through, Achilles is at the top of the list of injuries not to play with. Shame on you!

  16. I agree Thursday night games are awful and have no problem getting rid of them but is there a correlation between Thursday night games and increased injuries? Stats would be nice thank you. And oh btw whether I agree with them or not I’m tired of these primadonnas yelling eff you to anyone that doesn’t agree with them.

    #talklikeaninmate

  17. TNF is garbage and should be illegal. That being said, it’s going nowhere because it generates money for owners and the NFL without any consideration for the health and safety of their players. Last week the Bills got shafted going in on a short week on the road against a division rival. Not to say they would have won but the deck was stacked against them. If they must be played have one team come off a bye and the opponent should be playing at Home. Not a perfect solution but closer to fair.

  18. Since every team plays at least one Thursday (following a Sunday) game. Maybe this is something they could protest instead of protesting the Falg & anthem…..Just sayin

  19. Get another job. Work 8am-5pm, 30mins to 1hr off for lunch. Weekends off. Two weeks vacation, work year round. Oh, and you won’t earn 6-digit income per week. Sound good to you?

  20. Detroit has played a Thursday game every year for over 75 years and I’ve never once heard a single player complain about it. Ever.

  21. The NFL should only do Thursday Night games for 6 weeks a season, that way it has a special feel to it. Always keep the Thanksgiving Day games. For the other 5 weeks have teams coming off of their bye week play in them.

  22. The commissioner is mad that he might have to earn his money the way that his players do, through incentives, all while enjoying that guaranteed money that his players don’t enjoy. And how does he make that money? By things like Thursday Night Football, something that every player and coach pretty much hates. And so do most of the fans.

    I love the NFL. I love football. But, it’s a little crazy right now. The owners and commissioner are so crazy right now that even soap opera writers are taking notes.

  23. I simply don’t watch Thursday night games anymore unless it’s my team, same goes for Monday night football. Over saturation is a major reason why! I never thought I could get too much football, but it’s happened.

  24. Baldwin is right, and th problem is with the NFLPA – they agreed to this and they should stand up and say no more. Thing is, it’s not just the owners who are greedy, it’s the players too. Whatever they’re all getting, it’s no with it – the games suck, and the toll it takes on the players is too high.

  25. These guys play a game for a living and can’t stop whining. I have to go to work and do physical labor every day for 8 hours. Football players wouldn’t be able to handle a normal job and would need a day off every other day. Haha. How weak are people these days? Gotta have more time off between playing games? Need more safe spaces? Wow, this country is looking pretty sad.

  26. Hello???

    The players union agreed to a deal involving TNF, the league takes in 900 million which is split with the players.

    I agree they should scrap it, but these guys complaining wanted it for the money.

  27. mazenblue says:
    November 10, 2017 at 6:19 am
    I hate working everyday, my body never recover I still do it. The bills add up. Medical problems in the family add up. I keep my head up and keep woring for the family. Must be n ice to be a whiny nothing and be paid millions. Go to work kid, every working man in the world does without whining about it.

    Im quite certain that your job isn’t nearly as physical as an NFL players is. Whiny nothing? They make more money than you and have more talent. Lots of people whine about their jobs. Lots of people don’t have that broadcast across every form of media. People like you make me want to kneel for the anthem. Not to disrespect troops, but to disrespect the complete lack of intelligence and decency that our country has come to stand for.

  28. I want better quality football. I want my favorite players to have a better chance of playing. We have supercomputers. How hard can it be to schedule teams on Thursday after a BYE week in exactly 2 minutes.

    The laborious process of doing the right thing is baffling. For once, the players have a point.

  29. Do the players understand that dropping Thursday Night Football will lower NFL revenue, which will lower each team’s salary cap number, which will lower salaries?

  30. It reasonable for a fan to require that the nfl product be of the highest quality, it is unreasonable, however to have that same quality expectation from the current high quantity output of nfl. And it should be the work of the commissioner to strike that balance of quality and quantity, and this where Goodell is failing the most. It is important for a commissioner to have a strong backbone and bring this to the owners attention by providing tangible proof that the extra output will actually hurt their brand and product in the long term, and is not worth the short term monetary gain. But, as most have already found out, Goodell is some spineless turd that is just in place to do as he is told, but only by a select few owners not the league as a whole.

  31. Thursday night blows, & has for a while. Poor product, typically very sloppy games, players not at full strength, takes away from the NFL weekend, takes away from the excitement of the other NFL night games, takes away from the build up for college football, etc, etc.

  32. The issue isn’t just Thursday. It’s time between games. Four days isn’t enough so make it five or six.

    Have fewer games on Sunday if need be. Play on other week nights and get more viewers. The goal is to give the players a reasonable amount of time to rest, recover and travel. The fans would get better play to watch, see more teams they wouldn’t see otherwise and players would avoid some of these injuries..

    Oh yeah, the owners would make more money.

  33. It must be super hard for players to be convinced that the league cares about their safety when they won’t even make an effort to adjust scheduling for Thursday night game participants.

  34. Everyone wants to trash the owners and Cornish but the players and their union signed off on it to bring more money to the communal table.

    If they don’t want TNF, bring it up at the next CBA and accept that salary caps will go down a bit.

  35. I really don’t care that it gets in the way of high school football, but Friday night makes more sense in terms of player safety and it’s only 1.5 days from Sunday. Many people go out on Friday nights, but there still is a market for this, especially with the fans of teams involved.

  36. The only teams playing Thursday night games should be those coming off a bye week. Otherwise it’s just not enough time to recover from the previous game. The number of injuries last night is proof positive of that.

  37. Do soldiers get a week off to prepare for Thursday? Do construction workers? Nope and neither do you. Football isn’t the only physical job, but you get paid millions to do it, all while disrespecting our nation and soldiers with your racist protests.

  38. bobleblah says:

    November 10, 2017 at 6:27 am

    Seldom watch Thursday Football.
    or Monday Football.
    or Sunday Night Football.
    ————————————————
    Do you want some kind of award? Why are you here if you clearly don’t like football?

  39. Too many Thursday games. It should go back to a special occasion, like they use to be only on Thanksgiving.

  40. I told my boss our Monday morning meetings every week should be illegal. It turns out, I don’t actually HAVE to show up at all. But unemployment doesn’t pay nearly as much.

  41. shlort says:
    November 10, 2017 at 7:59 am
    These guys play a game for a living and can’t stop whining. I have to go to work and do physical labor every day for 8 hours. Football players wouldn’t be able to handle a normal job and would need a day off every other day. Haha. How weak are people these days? Gotta have more time off between playing games? Need more safe spaces? Wow, this country is looking pretty sad.

    I have no idea what type of physical labor you’re referring to but does it involve wind sprints, blocking & tackling and have to run into 300lb co-workers every day? Why do people think these guys just show up on Sunday after sitting in a hammock the other 6 days? I don’t care what type of physical labor you’re doing, it’s nowhere close to the grind of an NFL player. Unless you’re talking kickers of course.

  42. The players have a choice. Play football or don’t. That is just the way it is. They will never win a general strike because of the short term career span of the players vs the long term ownership timeline. If they want to make some headway, they should just all decide to simply not play that night’s game. If one team flat out refused to play, for just one night, it would send a shock through the owners. What would they do? Fire all the players on that team? Can’t do that. Refund all of the tickets? I think they would have to. The network carrying the game would have to scramble to fill the space. It would work best on a Sunday night game, because you would want to do it on a game televised by someone other than NFL Network.

  43. NFL Players need to quit whining!! I dare you to go complain to the NHL players who play 3-4 games per week; that have the same effort, physicality and explosiveness. You don’t hear them complaining about more than 1 game per week.

    NFL = Weak and soft. Suck it up cupcakes!!!

  44. Thursday Night football brings in a massive amount of money to the NFL. The contract is for $900 million for two years. So $450M per year. When you divide that per player, then take half of that, because CBA requires about half of gross revenue to be paid to players, then Thursday Night Football is “worth” about $125,000 per player in player revenue. Obviously, players with bigger contacts get a larger amount of this money. I would guess that someone like Doug Baldwin makes well over half a million dollars per year, possibly much more, because of Thursday Night Football. Maybe he should think about the numbers before he talks.

  45. mclennon99 says:
    November 10, 2017 at 8:02 am
    Why not limit it to 8 TNF games a year….weeks 5-12 with both teams coming off a bye? 16 teams one year….the other 16 the next. Problem solved.

    ———————-
    Giving up games means giving up money. So we can assume any such solution is out of consideration.

    But, if they added a second bye they could extend the season by one week (mo money!, mo money!, mo money!), plus then they can use the extra byes to get rid of the four days rest thing, which is the real problem. And possibly that might increase the quality of Thursday night games. They are not all bad I get that, but the percentage is higher so it would help if they addressed that.

  46. They sign up for millions of dollars. I don’t care what day they play on, it’s a game. NFL players want no practice & just to play on 16 Sunday’s for 20 million a year. Defenses can’t tackle & Olines can’t block but expect me to have sympathy for Thursday games these professionals can’t get ready for 1 time a season.. No get out there and play earn what you signed up for Thursday night games..

  47. It is contractually agreed upon. Even if the NFL wanted out, I am not sure they could (i.e. Networks). Who they need to be complaining to is DeMaurice Smith. Next time they negotiate a contract, this is off the table. See if the players are willing to miss a few games salary over the matter.

    For me it is a simple solution……double headers on Monday night.

  48. TNF is a money grab no one wants other than Owners and delusional Nike thinking someone would actually buy those disgusting Color Rush costumes : Seattle looked like a bunch of highlighters or glo-sticks.

    The product sucks ; the Force of impact on players bodies is far higher than D-1or Canada because of the speed of the have Baldwin is right

  49. TNF is nothing more than a money grab. For those who are saying, “why don’t you just get a real job,” let’s dismantle that argument really quick. For starters, athletes are paid to use their bodies. So if the body isn’t given ample time to recover, how does one suspect for an athlete to perform at his peak without the risk of a detrimental/possibly career-threatening injury? 2. If you work five days a week in an office, and you only use your body to type on a keyboard, there is no reason you should compare your line of work with athletes. What is so hard about that concept?

  50. whywerule says:
    November 10, 2017 at 4:36 am
    Baldwin is right but as long as there are 32 owners and a Commissioner who do not care about player safety, and us fans who are willing to watch, it will not go away.

    We would all have to boycott but if we were really going to boycott we would not post on this site.

    ——————————–

    Two things :
    1. You need to be able to prove that Thursday night games cause more injuries. If this had happened on a Sunday would you be complaining about Sunday games?

    2. Realize that this means less money for the players. Networks are paying for the Thursday night games. Half of that money goes to the players.

  51. Thursday night football is not the problem. Four days rest is the problem. I agree they should make it that teams get to play Thursday night game after their byes or some mini bye of a kind. There really isn’t evidence that shows increased injuries on Thursday night games, but the rest factor has got to be at issue.

  52. @udontknowjaq says:

    They sign up for millions of dollars. I don’t care what day they play on, it’s a game. NFL players want no practice & just to play on 16 Sunday’s for 20 million a year. Defenses can’t tackle & Olines can’t block but expect me to have sympathy for Thursday games these professionals can’t get ready for 1 time a season.. No get out there and play earn what you signed up for Thursday night games..
    ===========================================================================================================
    I’m sure they wouldn’t mind playing on Thursday IF they didn’t play 4 days prior. That’s the point…4 days to recover simply isn’t enough. Injured players could likely play on Sunday but not on Thursday. You, like so many others are blinded by the $$$ players make. You can’t wrap dollar bills around an injury as if it were tape.

  53. Maybe coaches should retaliate by playing the second unit for the game (not unlike NBA teams who rest their star players). You have to wonder if fresh legs off the bench could play any worse than winded, depleted starters

  54. Lying about a confrontation with Police in Las Vegas should be illegal. The injuries give them a legitimate reason to kneel.

  55. liberalmel says:
    November 10, 2017 at 5:43 am
    Shut up, Doug. For the millions you whiners make I’d play every day if needed.
    ———————————————————————————
    And you wouldn’t last half of your rookie season let alone a decade +. Everyone running your mouth about how he’s rich and should shut up and play, you’re the ones coming across as immature crybabies. Grow up and quit whining about a legitimate career-endangering complaint by a professional who puts in the work DESPITE already being a millionaire. You just sound like you’re jealous of his success.

  56. 90% of the people on here just dont think before they post. Get a clue ppl. they are not being whiny babies about Thursday Night Football, they are just telling the truth, those games are very dangerous and have the most injuries.

  57. The jealousy of some of the people here. “Get a real job!” “I work everyday” And they don’t? They work year round to perform at levels none of the people complaining about can do. The ones talking about a real job are most likely overweight, that will call in sick with a sore ankle because they tripped.

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