The NFL nearly had a super public relations crisis on its hands when Arizona tried to pass SB 1062, which would've let restaurants refuse to serve people based on sexual or religious preferences. The bill was vetoed at the last minute and the NFL didn't have to look for other location options for Super Bowl XLIX.
Cardinals star Larry Fitzgerald is happy about that. But not just because it keeps the Super Bowl in Arizona. He told Tom Pelissero of USA Today on Saturday that he doesn't believe laws like that "have any place in our society."
"I didn't think there was any chance it was going to go through," Fitzgerald said. "I had a strong feeling it would've been vetoed. It's good that it was, obviously. With the Super Bowl coming or any (event) like that, I think it just doesn't have any place in our society. I'm happy that it's behind us now."
Had the law passed, the NFL was in a precipitous position. The Super Bowl would've been less than a year away, but Phoenix simply wasn't an acceptable location with that law in place. Particularly while preparing to welcome Michael Sam, likely to be the first openly-gay player in NFL history, into the league.
Moving the Super Bowl location was a possibility, but not an enticing one, given all the planning that goes into such an event. Instead, Arizona and the league now get to relax and prepare for the world's biggest stage.
"It's fun. It's going to be great for our community," Fitzgerald said. "It'll generate some revenue for our state, and obviously, it gives us a chance to play at home, too. It's a lot of great opportunities that present themselves."
Two things. One, good for Fitzgerald for standing up for the rights of others. And two, good for Fitzgerald that he doesn't have to spend the next year answering questions about whether or not Phoenix is going to end up landing the Super Bowl.