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Contact Sports

11:05 AM, Jan 7, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Politics, we are told by people who are obsessed with it, is a "contact sport." Like football, don't you know. Actually, football is not a contact sport, as Vince Lombardi once explained, and when it comes to football, his word is always final.  

rg3

As Lombardi famously said, "Football is not a contact sport, it's a collision sport—dancing is a contact sport."

And the results of those collisions can sometimes be awful to look at, as this photograph of Robert Griffin III in this morning's Washington Post makes plain.

Fans in Washington will now have a long off-season during which they can argue the wisdom, prudence and, even, morality of Coach Mike Shanahan's decision (or non-decision) on whether to leave his quarterback – and the future of the franchise – in the game when he was already damaged and vulnerable to further injury.

In this case, the parallels between football and politics, as played in Washington, do apply. Second guessing and deep analysis of controversial decisions is what people in Washington do instead of make small talk and exchange remarks about the weather.  

For the next several weeks we will hear a lot on the wisdom of Shanahan's decision to leave RGIII in the game and President Obama's to nominate Chuck Hagel to be secretary of defense.

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