The NFL’s Corrupt Kingpin
The NFL is one of the biggest corporations in the United States with a net worth at nearly 70 million dollars. That being said, many people don’t think the NFL’s commissioner is worthy of running this corporation. There are many reasons people think this, ranging from unfair suspensions, to lying to media. However the question remains. Is Roger Goodell fit to be commissioner of the NFL? In my opinion, as a fan and player of the game, the answer is no. Roger Goodell has corrupted the great NFL with new rules and bad decisions on suspensions or fines.
A Little Backstory
Now, before I lay into Roger Goodell I feel as though I should give you a little preface. I have played football since 2nd grade and loved it ever since. So yes, i’m a diehard fan of the sport. While still being a big Vikings fan, I became a Denver Broncos fan during the 2010-2011 season. In 2012 when Peyton Manning, my favorite player, joined the team I grew to love them and they became my favorite team. This being said I am opinionated on the topics below but not because I am a fan of that team and or player.
While Roger Goodell has made many controversial decisions during his run as NFL commissioner some of the most controversial have been on player suspension. They have been considered too harsh and sometimes not harsh enough. Examples of this is the case of Tom Brady’s involvement in deflategate and Giants kicker Josh Brown who was involved in nearly 20 domestic violence incidents.
You would probably think Josh Brown has been suspended for at least a season or more. Thinking that would make you wrong, very wrong. Josh Brown was suspended ONE, yes ONE game after his wife told police he had beaten her 20 times! He admits this too according to the USA Today, in which they say police police reports (not released to the public) have him confessing the the crime. He has since been released by the Giants organization, no thanks to Goodell.
That would be Goodell’s lack of punishment right out in the topen, on full display. While the Brown case shows his lack of punishment, his overuse of power however is best shown in Tom Brady’s case.
After the NFL found that New England Patriots footballs used during the 2014 AFC championship game were deflated to far under the regulation, they proceeded to suspend Tom Brady for 4 games. Now, Tom Brady was never proven to have known about the footballs being deflated but the NFL and the commissioner still suspended him. Infact, according a Business Insider article, when the NFL finished its investigation into the case they concluded that Tom Brady LIKELY broke league rules on purpose.
To be fair while some punishment definitely should be given out four games for maybe knowing about it is a big stretch.
So just to wrap this up, four games for maybe knowing about deflated footballs, and one game after being arrested for domestic violence multiple times. Now that just doesn’t add up. Unfortunately, that’s not the only thing the doesn’t make sense about some of Roger Goodell’s decisions.
Between the illegal hits, unsportsmanlike conduct and excessive celebration, fines have always been a disciplinary action taken against players that mess up.
However Goodell has taken them way too far. He has come under fire for unneeded and unfair fines before, but he clearly hasn’t stopped with them. To begin the 2016 season, Roger Goodell and the NFL threatened multiple players with fines if they wore 9/11 cleats to honor those who lost their lives. Now, According to a USA Today article, the “NFL won’t fine players who violated the league’s equipment policy to honor victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on Sunday”. This came after the NFL was meant with EXTREME backlash on social media , after saying that players like Odell Beckham, Avery Williamson and Brian Cushing among others would be fined for were these type of cleats.
While the NFL didn’t fine these players they did threaten to. That just doesn’t seem right. Why should players pay for honoring lost lives or raising awareness for a cause, especially if it’s something as small as wearing cleats that violate the NFL shoe policy. What rule do these shoes even break you might ask. Well according to the NFL’s official rule book it breaks a rule under Uniform: Shoes that says “All players on the same team must wear shoes with the same dominant base color”. It’s true some player my take this too far but there are better ways to solve this then fines. Still even the fines are the worst things Goodell has done, because his handling of the Ray Rice case are infuriating.
The Rice Case
Perhaps one of Goodell’s worst decisions came in 2014 when a accusation of Ray Rice assaulting his wife in an elevator surfaced. Now at this time Roger Goodell claimed to not have a video of the incident and suspended Ray Rice two games. This is no problem if the video hadn’t been released and the NFL didn’t have access to the video, but that was not the case.
The NFL and mainly Goodell did not suspend Rice indefinitely until after the video was released and he came under fire for a weak suspension. According to a NY times article “when video footage was released showing Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancée in an elevator. The Ravens promptly released him, and Goodell suspended him indefinitely. But the video raised fresh questions about why Goodell initially suspended Rice in July for only two games”. The commissioner issuing such a short and weak suspension is inexcusable. Goodell’s handling of this case is just another reason why he is not fit to run the NFL.
Roger Goodell has been the commissioner of the NFL for 10 years. During his run he has made some very controversial calls regarding rules, fines and everything in between. He has handled some situations very poorly, such as the Rice case along with the John Brown and Tom Brady suspensions. His fines have been bogus, and he has corrupted the great NFL. With all that being said in my opinion he is not fit the be commissioner of the NFL.
Featured image: The great sport of football by pexels.