TAMPA, FL — The NFL and NFLPA continued its long history of honoring veterans and active duty members of the military today by pledging to refrain from hyperbolically comparing football to war for 24 hours on Veterans Day, according to a press release.
Along with wearing commemorative hats, gloves, and using camouflage Gatorade towels on the sideline, coaches and players will not refer to rallying the troops, doing battle, going to war, fighting it out in the trenches, or use any other euphemism that suggests grown men playing a sport for millions of dollars can be compared in any way to the men and women who have seen active duty in the United States Military.
Greg Schiano, the fiery coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, admitted he was struggling to find the right words to motivate his 0-8 team without relying on well-worn war tropes.
“Come on guys, we’ve gotta go out there and play our game, we’ve gotta battle– no wait, dammit,” Schiano said, as he crossed a line out of his pre-game speech. “Can I use ‘fight’? You can fight without being in the military, so that’s still fair game, right?”
Monday Night Football analyst Jon Gruden was irate when informed the NFL’s decision also applied to him.
“Lemme tell you something Mike, I support the troops and the veterans and everything,” Gruden said to his boothmate Mike Tirico. “But how can I perform my job without relying on militant metaphors?”
“I mean, how am I supposed to describe Ryan Tannehill’s arm?” Gruden continued. “It’s a cannon. It just is. Whether he’s firing bullets in the pistol formation to the sideline or heaving a bomb into the red zone from the shotgun, he’s a gunslinger, through and through.”
Gruden’s inability to describe football without using terms evocative of grisly carnage and mortal peril faced by our country’s servicemen every day around the world was shared by many Dolphins and Buccaneers players as well.
“To the PC police in the NFL front offices trying to tell us there are words we can and can’t use, I gotta say, unless you played football, I got no respect for you,” said Dolphins guard Richie Incognito. “You couldn’t possibly understand what words are used in the locker room between us soldiers, or what it’s like to serve your brothers on the field of battle.”
“Football is hell.”
At press time, journalists across the nation struggled to rewrite their stories about the Buccaneers and Dolphins
doing battle fighting a border war getting into a dogfight playing a football game tonight.