The Deadly Super Bowl sins

Super BowlIn commenting on previous posts about the Super Bowl, GetReligion reader Evagrius has been quick and consistent in reminding us that football is just a "bloody, brutal and violent" game that has nothing to do with religion or Christianity. I respectfully disagree about the religion part (what sport in America has more religious people in it than football?), but that does not mean that the concerns Evagrius raises are not covered by the media, and many of them have a lot do with moral issues. Earlier this week, the Associated Press poked around in the players' temptations in warm and sunny Miami and how they can easily distract the players from their main purposes. The article leaves a lot to read between the lines, but the point is clear. Players are seeking a good time, but that could cost them their much-desired championship rings. You all remember Atlanta Falcons safety Eugene Robinson?

The Bears took advantage of their head start Sunday night.

"We hung out a little bit," defensive end Adewale Ogunleye said. "I can't say too much. It was the only night I'm going to be able to do that. We had most of the guys on the team there -- most of the single guys. I don't want to get the married guys in trouble. But the single guys hung out."

Details may be sketchy, but it's easy to imagine how much fun a group of millionaire athletes can find -- especially in South Florida, the kind of place where a 7-foot NBA All-Star center can be seen chasing down a hit-and-run driver at 4 o'clock in the morning.

Both teams know they should be in bed at that hour.

"If you want a ring," Bears receiver Bernard Berrian said, "you're going to avoid the distractions."

I don't get the sense that reporter Steven Wine was allowed to trail the players during their nights of fun. If he did, this article's details leave a lot to be desired.

Of course partying in Miami isn't the only potential trip-up involved in Super Bowl week. All over the country, millions of dollars are exchanging hands in betting. In all the articles I've read on the subject, sports betting is treated like any other business and little mention is made that betting often destroys lives and has little redeeming value to society. Or at least that's how some see it.

The New York Times published a much-needed piece earlier this week about the pain and suffering players endure after their glory years have passed by. But don't expect the broadcasters to be discussing it during the game tonight.

The top Super Bowl deadly sin in my book is the egotism of the players. The Miami Herald had a nice piece on this earlier this week, and it made me remember why we should appreciate the pair of coaches in tonight's game: They are polar opposites of the egomaniacs that abound in this game.

Those of you who despair over the sin and extravagance that accompanies Super Bowl football, rest assured that some journalists are out there covering the story.

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