For those of you who think professional football players can be as dumb as tree jumps and still play the game, as long as they are either big and strong, have an arm that can throw a hand grenade from Ohio to California or have a leg that can kick the chrome off of a bumper, you need to think again. Pro football is a very complex sport and unless you've got a good head on your shoulders, you're going to find out the hard way that it is not simply a matter of being skilled.
Sure, you have to be big and strong, especially if you're going to be a lineman. These guys top the scales and 300 pounds plus and feel like mack trucks when they hit you. Surely if you're a 90 pound weakling, you're not going to get far in the game of football. And yes, if you have a fantastic arm and can throw a football the length of the field accurately, you'll most likely make a good quarterback, again, provided that you have a head on your shoulder.
Okay, so why the need for brains? Is not this a much simpler game? Is not the object of the game to score a goal by either running or passing the football over the goal line? And if that's not simple enough, you can also kick it over if you think you're too far out for a regular score. How hard can this be? Kids in high school play it and some of these kids are not the bright bulbs in the bunch.
To answer that question, one has to understand the level at which pro football is played. These players ARE the strongest of the strong and the most talented. They have the best arms and legs. When it comes to raw talent, there is none better anywhere. What separates the good players from the great players is how they assimilate the game on an intellectual level. In pro football there are a great number of plays for both offense and defense. Some teams have play books that have well over 100 plays. And they're all used. If the coach calls a play, you better know what it means and how you're supposed to react. That means storing a hundred or more plays in your head. And you thought cramming for an exam was hard. This requires a certain degree of brain power.
Imagine the coach calls a play and you forget which play it is and you miss an assignment or a route or a block. It could mean the difference between scoring and not scoring or the opposition scoring or not scoring. Usually it's mistakes that decide games. By having the plays down cold, you minimize the chance of those mistakes.
So the next time you think that football players are just a bunch of dumb jocks, I suggest you try getting a hold of one of their play books and see if you can learn even half of what's in them.
Professional football. It's NOT for dumb people.