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Death comes for Jack Tatum

On violence in the game, "the Assassin," and the institutionalized cruelty of the NFL

Originally Published: August 2, 2010
By Jeff MacGregor | ESPN.com

At some point, football isn't just about football.

Whether you like it or not.

So five minutes this week about life and death and longing, about the late Jack Tatum and the NFL, about good guys and bad guys and the uses of cruelty, about mercy and honesty and the geometry of violence, about clean hits and dirty laundry and about what it means to be human.

When I was a kid, football was just football. Block, tackle, run, throw. Playing or watching, each act stood ...

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