Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Good Seats Still Available

Mar 21, 2022

​A pro football​ player who protests against the actions of his government, is shunned by ​the league establishment, and eventually ​winds up out of the ​game, working for social justice. ​ No, it's not Colin Kaepernick​; it's the 1960s NFL saga of a former St. Louis Cardinals linebacker named Dave Meggyesy.
A 17th-round draft pick in 1963 out of Syracuse, Meggyesy was a steady presence and reliable performer for seven mostly mediocre Cardinal seasons (save for a 1964 season-ending Bert Bell Benefit [aka "NFL Playoff"] Bowl victory over Green Bay) - when he quit at the height of his career​, ​repulsed by a game he saw rife with problems and injustices, and a nation fighting an increasingly futile war in Vietnam.
In 1970, he wrote​ a bombshell exposé of a book called "​Out of Their League"​ – a blistering assault on football and ​the institutions that enabled it - in which ​he detailed ​multiple ills of the game, many of which still exist today. 
Racism, corruption, militarism, institutionalized violence, drug abuse, collegiate "amateurism," and the relentless inevitability of injuries and their lasting effects - blunt and searing insights that​ ​​not only ​shocked ​fans of the NFL, ​but also​ ​shook up the broader 1970s ​sport​s establishment.​
​Still​​, at its heart,​ ​Meggyesy's​ memoir ​wa​s also a moving de​piction​ of ​his individual​ struggle​ for social justice and personal liberation​, the contents of which were both ahead of its time - and as timely as ever.​