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In Defense of Roger Goodell

In Defense of Roger Goodell
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell talks about the NFL football owners approving the move of the Oakland Raiders to Las Vegas during a news conference at the NFL owners meetings Monday, March 27, 2017, in Phoenix. Photo: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

There were reports earlier this week that Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who thinks he is the National Football League’s ranking owner which may be a surprise to the NFL old line families including the Maras and the Rooneys, is ready to lead an insurgency to rid the business of Commissioner Roger Goodell.

The report goes onto say that Jones has 16 allies who are not happy with the direction of the league. In other words, there are owners in the National Football League who are worried about the revenue gravy train and the National Anthem protests and what impact that those protests might have on the business where it matters the most: The owners’ wallets.

The owners are Goodell’s boss. In fact there are 31 bosses along with one team’s board of directors. Has Goodell done a good job? In a sense he has, the money train comes stopping at 32 stations dropping off big bags of cash.

But Goodell’s record is being questioned. Goodell as the NFL’s chief negotiator in the last collective bargaining talks, won big for the owners. Based on the revenue sharing percentage, they are spending less money on players’ salaries now than they did when Goodell started in 2006.

There are complaints how Goodell handled the Ray Rice domestic violence issue. But Goodell cannot be blamed for other problems like concussions. He doesn’t own a team like Jerry Jones. The same Jerry Jones who doesn’t think constant pounding on the football field leads brain damage. The same Jones who dressed a player who was arrested for DUI manslaughter.

Goodell did not move teams out of St. Louis and San Diego, his owners did. Goodell isn’t behind the Oakland Raiders move to Las Vegas. Mark Davis is doing that. Goodell is not responsible for players’ bad behavior and arrests, that is on individual players who have broken the law. Goodell isn’t perfect but neither are his bosses.

By Evan Weiner For The Politics Of Sports Business

This article was republished with permission from the original publisher, Evan Weiner.


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