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Ray Lewis: No NFL = More Crime?

The NFL lockout has all sorts of negative effects. For us, perhaps the biggest negative is having to incessantly discuss the lockout and how it stinks that there is nothing football going on other than leveraging, rhetoric and legal analysis. Baltimore Ravens star Ray Lewis told ESPN's Sal Paolantonio recently in an interview that the lockout, if it takes away games will have one other unintended result -- that of crime increasing.

Lewis had this to say:

"Do this research if we don't have a season -- watch how much evil, which we call crime, watch how much crime picks up, if you take away our game."

Lewis thinks that in some places, while the NFL is playing games for several weeks, people are turned away from doing bad things because of the great game of football. "There's nothing else to do Sal," explained Lewis.

Lewis may have a point. The NFL is certainly a welcome distraction for all of us. But to say that crime will go up is a little on the side of hyperbole.

Consider the crime that happens at football games. Take the Oakland Raider fans alone. But at home, it is not as if there really is "nothing" to do.

The claim Lewis made a bit extreme, but the premise of his comments are right on. He told Paolantonio that the lockout is "way more than us" (meaning owners and players). He is right. We the fans are affected because there is no action in player movement or OTAs. Team employees are being furloughed. People are losing their jobs.

Not playing the 2011 season would be tragic. But more crime? I just can't agree with that. People have far too many other things to worry about than football. We just prefer football to those other things once a week.

In any case...let's get the lockout done and the football started.