Originally Posted by Nzoner
Here's an excerpt from the book I keep talking about.If you click the link it will take you to a lot more including our own Len Dawson saying if you want to fix a game the kicker can control it more than any player.
Consequently, it is naive to think that the only litmus test of honest NFL football is whether or not its games are fixed. It is not. There are far more important considerations in making this determination. And those considerations must encompass the associations of NFL personnel with the underworld and, most importantly, the backgrounds and business relationships of those who rule professional football: the NFL team owners.
The organized-crime gambling syndicate believes that inside information is necessary in order to discover what a member of a team is doing or might be doing. Aside from the rare fix, inside information is the commodity that professional gamblers will bank on. The mob wants to learn everything it can about the players' health, their marital problems, deaths in their families, drug dependencies, internal team problems, and anything else that might affect on-field performances, especially those situations that are not immediately reported in a public forum.
I am not sure when that quote by Dawson about the kicker influencing the game came out, but I am certain the game has changed significantly since it did, considering the book came out in 1995. By change I mean the money is so big now. Kickers make good money these days and can have long careers. I can't imagine they risk their jobs for a few games of fixes, unless of course the payout is just too big to pass up. But who knows, the money the guys offer players could be big to the player but miniscule in comparison to what they stand to make.
Probably the easier people to get to would be the refs, especially the guys calling pass interference, because they can really influence a game on just a few plays.