DAHLBERG ON SAFETY

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Associated Press

Posted on February 3, 2013 at 3:35 PM

Updated Sunday, Feb 3 at 3:36 PM

The latest piece from AP national sports columnist Tim Dahlberg asks: Could football end up killing itself?

It's Dahlberg's take on the current state of safety in the NFL, and where Commissioner Roger Goodell says things are headed.

An excerpt:

On Sunday perhaps the biggest audience ever to see a Super Bowl will gather in front of televisions for parties of their own. The game has become America's unofficial national holiday, its tradition of chip eating, beer drinking and commercial watching as deeply ingrained in the country's fabric as turkey and stuffing.

We celebrate the game even as it takes a brutal toll on those who play it. Football is a hurt business, and the biggest cheers on Sunday will be for those who deliver the biggest hits.

So remember when you jump and down and holler and scream that former players, some of whom entertained us in Super Bowls past, are suffering in the worst possible ways because of the beating their brains took on the playing field.

That the NFL is finally waking up to the crisis is commendable. That it took this long is deplorable.

It's hard to comprehend, and it may be the ultimate paradox. But football itself could be the one thing that kills the NFL.

Read the full column here: http://bit.ly/YuGUA1

— Tim Dahlberg — http://twitter.com/timdahlberg

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EDITOR'S NOTE — "Super Bowl Watch" shows you the Super Bowl and the events surrounding the game through the eyes of Associated Press journalists across New Orleans and around the world. Follow them on Twitter where available with the handles listed after each item.

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