By Alan Shope, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
Former coach Romeo Crennel in the locker room with players
A new NFL rule will require the home team to install cameras inside their locker rooms and broadcast pre-game images to the fans in the stadium and those watching on their smartphones.
And some current and former players consider this an invasion of privacy, which they are lamenting. Coaches privately aren't thrilled either.
Former Chiefs receiver Danan Hughes said a camera in the locker room showing pre-game rituals and actions would have made him uncomfortable. He said some players wear nothing but their briefs or jock straps in the locker room until 10 minutes before they walk out on the field.
He said he doesn't think fans will learn that much.
"For me, it's a lot of work for not that much that will happen," Hughes said.
Former Chiefs defensive back Jayice Pearson discussed the issue on his afternoon radio talk show. He said he doesn't support cameras beaming pre-game images to fans.
"A lot of things happen and are said in that locker room especially pre-game that probably aren't politically correct and the locker room is a whole different world in of itself," Pearson said. "I don't think that's a proper place, especially at that time, for cameras to be in (the locker room) because people are going to misunderstand the things that are said and done in that locker room."
The Chiefs deferred to NFL league officials.
Former Chiefs wide receiver Eddie Kennison joined the chorus questioning the league's decision.
"Not only do you have to get prepared for the game, now you have to worry about who is watching you get prepared for the game," he said. "We have to focus on the aspect of the game, trying not to get hurt, trying not to hurt anyone else. That's just sacred time."
The NBA and NHL have similar cameras in place. Major League Baseball allows cameras and reporters into locker rooms for two hours before games.
Some suggested to the Wall Street Journal that fans will be disappointed not to see feisty, fire-up-the troops speeches before games. Instead, fans will see players listening to music, staring at the wall, running in place, doing stretching exercises, taking a nap, playing cards or staring at a wall.
New York Jets linebacker Antwan Barnes told the newspaper that coaches will have to be more articulate and players can't walk around in the buff.
Some fear that media hogs will ham it up for the cameras.
"If I was coaching, I would kick their @$$ out of there because it's now going to be all theatrical," former Dallas Cowboys coach Barry Switzer told the newspaper. "You're turning coaches into damn actors. It's sickening to see that (cameras) are able to do this. It's fake. It's phony. It's not real."
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told the Wall Street Journal that the cameras will give fans more access. He said fans won't be seeing "Win one for the Gipper" speeches, but instead a look into the teams' preparations.
The NFL owners approved the cameras in March. Audio isn't required.
Team talks are often broadcast by the NFL and during March Madness.
Copyright 2013 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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