The NFL says its ratings dip in the 2016 season was about distractions -- from binge watching stuff on Netflix to an overly contentious election season. But some think the decline indicates the NFL no longer what it used to be.
Media critic Jeff McCall says the decline may be here to stay.
"A lot of the luster of the NFL has started to fade and I expect the declining viewership to continue."
Professor McCall says a lot of the players are now millionaire prima donnas who spend too much time 'making it rain' in strip clubs.
"You had people who were viewed as blue collar tough guys in competition; but now we look at the NFL -- it's really overdone; it's a lot of showboating, it's overproduced with a lot of special effects."
Professor McCall says distractions like binge watching shows on Netflix are a problem, but the NFL also hurts itself by indulging millionaire prima donnas like Colin Kaepernick.
"I think a lot of people in the American mainstream are just thinking 'this is not the NFL of the past' when they sit down to watch a sports competition; now we're subjected to a lot of cultural and political implications."
Professor McCall says finding a way to cut down on commercials might help the league's sagging ratings. An analysis of Super Bowl 51 shows only about 16 minutes of the overall multi-hour presentation was actual football plays.