NFL Preseason and MTV's VMAs Have Something in Common: They're Too Long

Greg EspositoContributor IIAugust 29, 2011

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 28: Derek Hagan #80 of the Oakland Raiders breaks the tackle of Malcolm Jenkins #27 of the New Orleans Saints in the third quarter during an NFL pre-season football game at the Coliseum August 28, 2011 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Sunday night posed an interesting dilemma: watch a meaningless NFL game or watch a meaningless award show? Instead of choosing just one, I decided to partake in both. It was a decision I would eventually grow to regret.

Both the New Orleans Saints vs. Oakland Raiders on NBC and the Video Music Awards on MTV graced the flat screen in the man cave. While switching back and forth between the two, I realized they had more than a few things in common. They both included people wearing awkward costumes and wigs (keep in mind one involved the Blackhole and the other involved the blackhole that is Hollywood celebrities). That wasn’t the only thing they had in common though. The pair of events were each interesting at the beginning and held some intrigue, but it quickly became clear that it didn’t matter who actually won either.

Let’s be honest, there are really two reasons either takes place: reps and money. When it comes to the VMAs, artists’ reps want their clients to be front and center so they’ll be the talk of the town the following day (don’t think Lady Gaga dressed like a man just for the heck of it). In the football preseason it’s all about getting players reps on the field against different opponents. In both cases though, the real reason they are held and last longer than they should is because of the pure fact that they bring in money for MTV and the NFL.

The solution is simple: shorten both significantly.

Do we really need a fourth NFL preseason game where we see (fill in name of guy you’ll never hear from again who’s on your favorite team’s roster) battle against (fill in the name of another guy you haven’t heard of) for 60 minutes? Even NFL coaches and analysts admit that no one takes the final game seriously. It’s like the VMAs wasting what amounts to almost an hour on some no-name comedian telling jokes and doing comedy bits that a five-year-old hopped up on sugar wouldn’t even laugh at.

It’s time to cut the fluff and get down to what every one wants to see: quality performances from the people you’ve heard of. It’s time for the NFL to cut their preseason schedule down to at most three games and for MTV to cut at least an hour off the VMAs (if not the entire thing).

Like I said, by the end of the game and the awards show I had regretted my decision to watch either. Too bad both were like a car wreck where the car’s radio was tuned to the worst radio station ever—I couldn’t look away.

It’s time both the NFL and MTV do something to save us from ourselves.