The combine is just about over for 2016, which is a blessing for all warm-blooded human beings that still inhabit this baked planet. Reptilians have invaded our race and set about with their calculations and measurements, sizing us up for the proper cuts to feed their hatchlings. With each brood they grow stronger, waiting to ply the stars; to seek out new life and new food sources, to boldly go where no salamander has gone before.
There's no better example of this invasion than what goes on at the NFL scouting combine. They're there in the seats, saliva dripping down and corroding the concrete steps of that profane mausoleum built by the House of Irsay. The lizards want to eat, eat and they're about ready for the feast. The rotten bastards won't get away with this. Or will they? You're all watching now, every last one of you.
It's worthless. Absolutely worthless. I hate it all.
The abstract is fine. Watching freakishly athletic human beings doing freakishly athletic things has driven television for years. It's why God invented the Olympics and American Ninja Warrior. That declared, the takeaway from the combine is not a human appreciation for the athleticism displayed by men who play one of the most grueling sports in the world and have been playing it for no pay hitherto this moment. It is rather a goddamn weather forecast, an attempt to divine through goat entrails and sea shells who shall be ordained as a hero upon the gridiron and who shall be cast out as chaff. It's a celebration of the SAT, the Vietnam War-era United States Army draft system and astrology.
There's a poor soul out there getting his hand stretched goddammit! What monsters are we?
What's more is that this athleticism is ruined with interviews, damned interviews, tests and appearances before the press. Any goodness and individuality and bravado must be pressed out of the athlete and it must be done now dammit. In this new age of the NFL we still don't care about the character of these men but we'll make the godawful pretense to do so. The pageant is most suitable for this nonsense. No no, we must see just how well you'll be able to push the brand. Yes yes, that's good, oh yes you're such a young strapping lad. Oh, and those private questions! Those same damn lizards call the lot apes when the cameras are off. Jerry Jones is somehow our savior of the truth by demanding the interviews televised in order to disinfect those nasty places, which just shows you what kind of nonsensical world can look to elect Donald Trump.
But no, I don't want more of the combine off television; I want it off the air completely. Do it now. There's absolutely no need for this to be consumed and its presence on our football calendar is the death of intelligence. Scouting in football is already a suspect endeavor filled with dog whistles and useless, subjective hell. The more players refuse to partake in certain activities, the better it will make us all.
The combine's usefulness as an event of consumption is suspect. In my throes of February sickness I watch you all from Twitter, gibbering amidst yourselves about measurables and 40 times and all manner of mean confirmation biases. Somewhere along the line everyone's hypnotized themselves to believe that draft stock -- that awful awful word invented by people who need to sell mock draft page hits, including this wonderful website -- can, will, must change after the Combine and seeing everyone's hand sizes.
Those actually paid for this do no better. The following is not meant to offend Pete Schrager -- I enjoy his work greatly goddammit -- but this gibberish is exactly what I'm on about:
1. Carson Wentz won the week. Aced his interviews. Aced his workouts. Multiple teams told me the Andrew Luck comparisons not that far off.— Peter Schrager (@PSchrags) February 29, 2016
This is a bunch of otherworldly nonsense that's being fed to Pete. Not even Prince Oberon and his retinue would accept this as possible reality. The whole of this draftnik community was struggling to justify Wentz as a first round draft pick. A few throws, a few humble words, and...
He's done all this before -- in actual football games! But remove 21 other men and the competition and the grass and the adrenaline and somehow we have divined he shall be the second Indianapolis Sasquatch. What is this gibberish?!
Now we're expanding this awful thing. A veteran's combine! That's a tragedy too thick for me. Poor souls struggling to make it back to that cruel League and realizing their own mortality. I can't do it.
Leave the combine for those it is intended for; those scouts and lizards who write reports for their dark ageless masters. Maybe this stream of players opting out of the combine will continue and force the dark forces to do battle on different terms. Watch the college tape if you must; find the combine numbers printed and reported and add it to the gumbo. But watching the process itself play out on television and actively soaking it up is like smashing your genitals on FieldTurf at top speed.
I'll feel better in March.