BC 1988 wrote: ↑Sun Mar 14, 2021 4:30 pm
^^ I have been thinking exactly the same thing. Tom Mayenknect is not known to be a sensationalist reporter and this is how he feels about the CFL-XFL dialogue and what's behind it.
I am grateful for my 50 seasons of following the CFL (and the GC Portal is a nice memento for a long-time fan), but I accept the possibility of change or disappearance of the game as we have had it.
The brutal facts are we are a shrinking minority of die-hards. If the under 45 age group no longer considers the game relevant, so be it. As Blitz mentioned, the way CFL coaching systems frittered away our undeniable advantage over the NFL as a more entertaining game is in large part to blame.
While the CFL used to have that advantage I don't know if they've frittered it away as much as the NFL game and NCAA game have evolved to be closer to the CFL passing game than it used to be. I recall Gil Brandt talking about how back in the day pass blocking wasn't even taught until players hit the pros. I presume he was talking the 50s, 60s and maybe early 70s.
In 1970 only 9 teams of 26 teams scored over 300 points. The 49ers led with 352. Overall teams averaged 19.4 points for per game. NOTE: this was in a 14 game season.
Team per game passing averages in 1970 were 13.8 completions on 26.9 attempts for 161.4 yards with 1.2 TDs and 1.4 Ints.
Team per game running averages in 1970 were 31.4 carries for 120.4 yards and 0.8 TDs
In 2020 only 2 teams out of 32 managed fewer than 300 points, ironically the 2 NY teams. 14 of 32 scored more than 400 with Buffalo topping the league at 501. Overall the teams averaged 24.8 points per game.
Team per game passing averages in 2020 were 23.0 completions on 35.2 attempts for 240.2 yards with 1.7 TDs with 0.8 Ints.
Team per game running averages in 2020 were 26.9 carries for 118.9 yards and 1.0 TDs
The numbers indicate subtle change but nonetheless the NFL game has gone from 54% running plays and 46% passing to 57% passing and 43% running plays. A big difference in today's game is in the fact that QBs completed only 51.1% of their passes in 1970 compared to 2020's 65.2%. In terms of generating excitement in 1970 there were 2.3 running plays for every pass completion. In 2020 there was 1.2 running plays per pass completion.
Another big factor in overall scoring is FG accuracy. In 1970 it was 59.4%. In 2020 it was 84.2%. One of the interesting tidbits I found in the 1970 stats was that while Tom Dempsey set the NFL record with a 63 yarder he was only good for 8 out of 21 from 30 yards and longer and 52.9% overall. The CFL has also enjoyed similar improvements in passing and FG average.
You're as old as you've ever been and as young as you're ever going to be.