Forward Pass Redux 2006

100 years ago today, the forward pass was “invented” in football. It was less than a year from first use to when the forward pass was added to the football rulebook.

This got me thinking. What would happen if the forward pass were invented today?

Some ideas:

  • ESPN.com would unleash articles from their masters with opinions on either side of the argument. Len Pasquarelli would probably claim that the forward pass dilutes the purity of the game and should be sqelched immediately. Mark Schlereth would claim that America needs to wake up and recognize that Football is a business and if the business needs to evolve to attract fans, it should be allowed to do so.
  • Bill Simmons would, of course, weigh-in in some humorous way (that manages to cull from 80′s pop culture, music and movies) and generate a ton of fan mail from smarmy frat boys who engage in textual one-upsmanship by emailing questions like:

Hey Bill,

Is it me, or are leather helmets a 10 on the Unintentional Comedy Scale? Also, I’d like to submit Jack Schneider as a member of the Ewing Theory team. I mean, he couldn’t catch a forward pass if the ball was a Koosh and was lobbed underhanded!

More Cowbell,

Pete in Yonkers

How about in the world of politics. Of course, the politicians can’t help but get involved:

     
  • Democrats would claim that the forward pass was a ploy by Republicans to divert attention from the war in Iraq during mid-term elections. Then they would question whether the forward pass is a sign that steroids are a problem in football and organize commitees to investigate the possibility of government regulation of the sport.
  • Meanwhile, Republicans would claim that the forward pass is the work of Al-Qaeda and an attempt by international terrorists to attack us by changing our way of life. A vote for the Republican party is a vote against Al Qaeda!

Of course, the forward pass would never survive the media frenzy, Bradbury Robinson, the offender who dared to throw the pass would be demonized (along with his coach, Eddie Cochems) and the sport of football would remain in the stone age forever.

Just kind of makes one think… Maybe I am just making generalizations, but wouldn’t you agree that all of the things I listed above, funny or otherwise, aren’t really that far from the realm of possibility?