Roger Goodell Has 32 N.F.L. Owners in His Corner, for Now

Goodell has had his share of withering criticism as N.F.L. commissioner, but the league’s owners contend he would be difficult to replace.

Comments: 13

  1. The owners include two women, a former federal prosecutor, and a former professor of social policy, all of whom must be insensitive to victims of sexual abuse because they just must be. The facts are not important.

  2. Ahhh, the indispensable ("hard to replace") argument. Each owner probably thinks of themself that way, hence easy to transfer such thinking to the role played by their boy! But if they do decide they want change, I'd do the job for half price, a mere $22 million.

  3. Doing right in the NFL? It is all about the money. When Goodell hurts the bottom line, only then will he go.

  4. Goodell has been a poor leader from the first in this job, focused only on the owners' pocketbooks. He, and they, have no sense of shame or personal responsibility.

  5. We, the fans, will force the hands of the owners; so do not expect an immediate reaction to the Ray Rice hypocrisy. There are many speed-bumps intervening in what might be fans' best intentions. These include: season tickets which are not only already sold but likely passed down within families year over year, television rights that are booked years into the future, sponsors who have diverse revenue streams and will not feel the boycott of a football fan who is disillusioned by the Rice decision.

    And if one team makes a run at Rice, and receives no backlash, there will be others to follow; and the behavior then becomes normalized.

    We all do care about Ray Rice and his treatment of women. But, ultimately, it is our relative apathy, not the "money" and the "greedy owners" and the hundred other things that are hoisted aloft.

    If we really cared about player health, abuse of women, abuse of dogs (remember Michael Vick), we would stop going to the games or buying the products associated with the games.

    We are the issue, and until more of US choose to make the NFL an unproductive enterprise, it will move the "normal" line closer and closer to our worst tendencies.

    That is what is played out in this exercise, not some hob-gobblin capitalist plot against humanity. Capitalism, if anything, magnifies our inhumanity; but let's not confuse cause and effect or cause, leverage, and effect.

  6. Severe domestic assault is a horror. Severe non-domestic assault is a horror. The NFL's viewpoint on these things or anything else is as trivial as one could imagine; if society needs a billionaire boy's club that profits from an ethically dubious undertaking to function as their moral beacon the (pardon me) game is already up.

  7. Three times before I've asked whether the NYT or anyone has adduced any evidence on the central questions of whether N.F.L. players, as a class, have either a higher frequency of domestic-violence or whether, as a class, they have a higher frequency of criminal conduct. And I stated that, as far as I knew, neither the NYT or anyone else had adduced any evidence on either of those questions, though the NYT et al. have implied and in an editorial yesterday stated that N.F.L. players have a problem with domestic-violence.

    Well, I did some research, and among my first result was the NYT's own reporting, by Mr. Irwin, on the very questions, supra. See In that report, Mr. Irwin, citing and referencing official data and others' analysis, finds that, except for weapons charges, not only do N.F.L. players not have a worse problem with domestic-violence or criminality than the general male population, N.F.L. players have less frequency of all categories of criminal conduct than the general male population. Mr. Irwin also confirms what I suspected: That the incidents of criminal conduct very greatly from team to team, so that even grouping all N.F.L. players together is unfair and misleading.

    So, by the NYT's own reporting, N.F.L. players, as a class, over the last 13 years, have less frequency of domestic-violence and other crime than the general male population.

  8. Did Goodell blow the Rice case? Yes, but nowhere nearly as badly as the legal system blew it. In Rice's case we all had an unequivocal video to see what actually happened. The legal system egregiously let Rice off. In Adrian Peterson's case the matter is still being processed by the child welfare and legal systems. Why would the NFL suspend Peterson without any official disposition from the agencies that are actually charged with handling such matters? Rice definitely deserved to be tried for aggravated domestic battery, and, if Peterson did what he is accused of, he will deserve the appropriate legal consequences.

    I understand that the NFL has clauses concerning off-field misconduct, but since when do they really have a right to deny anyone of their livelihood over matters that are supposed to be handled in the public domain? This is big time big brother to an increasingly frightening degree.

  9. Rice should be out for at least one year. The longer we permit "stars," or anyone for that matter, to go around beating up on people, the more we deepen our lack respect for other humans. Why look the other way, be it stealing, gun play, or physical abuse. We need to live by a standard of some kind. Today that standard is "get me a good lawyer and a great spin doctor." Don't ever doubt the obvious. We determine the conduct of our friends and foes. Live with it.

  10. I just read the arbitrator's decision. A great deal of it had to do with what was said at the first hearing with Goodell on June 16, i.e., did Rice "come clean" about the incident or was Goodell mislead. The hand written notes of attendees and witnesses were examined. What amazes me is that no one thought to record the hearing! You would think that the arbitrator, who was a federal judge and does everything "on the record", would have insisted on it.

  11. The arbitrator did not say that the indefinite suspension was wrong. She concentrated on the 'facts' after the first 2-game suspension. As a former judge, she viewed the second suspension as double-jeopardy and said that was wrong. Why should this surprise anyone? She viewed this as a legal proceeding. If Rice had been suspended indefinitely the first time, it would stick.

    So, Goodell, get a firm policy in place and apply it consistently. There are more than a few thugs in the NFL who should be banished. Just do it right.

  12. Ex-FBI Director Robert Mueller has had more than sufficient time to conclude his investigation. Hell, I could have solved a cold case before this guy solves this case with far less evidence to consider! It's all about the money...always has been, always will be. To think otherwise is naive at best.

  13. I think you are assuming that Mueller is working full-time or overtime on this case. My guess is that he had a full workload and this was added to it. He probably gives it 8 hours/week of attention.