PDA

View Full Version : Former Player blasts Goodell



Iron Shiek
01-07-2011, 07:00 PM
Nate Jackson lays into Goodell in a well written piece that pretty much sums up how we all feel about him. Well put. :Clap

http://deadspin.com/5727848/



What a buzzkill. On the eve of the playoffs, just when fans' excitement in the sport is cresting, Roger Goodell tripped on his shoestrings again, puked all over his keyboard, and then hit "send."

His letter to the fans in a nutshell: greedy players and broke owners. The NFL needs more money (more even than the many billions of dollars the new Monday Night Football TV contract will provide), and the athletes who populate the league need less. It's the same tune he's been practicing, but now sung with a bullhorn. He wants the fans to keep in mind, as they watch the playoffs, that the athletes on their televisions are overpaid hooligans whose bodies are not their own properties and thus shall have no say in the direction of the league as a whole.

Five years into his tenure, the players are realizing what they have in Roger Goodell. At first, it was hard to tell. He had a refined message and promised the players that he wouldn't change a thing, unless it was deemed necessary, in the name of progress. Players are always skeptical of the power structure in the NFL coaches, owners, or, in this case, the commissioner. There is always a prevailing "us against them" feeling. Players know that loyalty and honesty are scarce at their level, but I think for the most part, the belief endured that Goodell would respect the sacrifice of the players and keep the ship steady.

But now there's a storm coming, and the skipper is drunk at the wheel. The first sign of this came after a few well-publicized player indiscretions. Goodell started beating his chest at the rest of us. We will not tolerate this. We will not tolerate that. Here is a video about it. Here is a pamphlet about it. Here is another pamphlet (he loves pamphlets). We'll be watching you. Here I am talking about it on television. Here I am again! How's my hair?

Goodell's failure to understand how this would be received by players has proved to be a recurring theme in his tenure. His vaunted code of conduct policy, his public flogging of the NFL's relatively few troublemakers, and his repeated cries for a "culture change," all seen by him as progress, were taken in the locker room as the opposite. One can only assume that a call for a "culture change" means that Goodell is unhappy with the current culture, or more to the point, with the players themselves. He is openly questioning their morals. Understanding that the majority of the players in the NFL are young black men, and he is representing the interests of old, rich, white owners, Goodell has needlessly widened the cultural rift between the players and the displeased owners who might wish their players weren't quite so black. That's not progress.

It also doesn't help that, in the eyes of the players, Goodell couldn't find his balls when he was in the same room with Brett Favre and a bagful of evidence. Roger could have given him a fitting retirement party, but he punked out.

Meanwhile, he had no problems locating his nuts when began doling out fines for what he perceived as overly vicious hits. But the way it looks in the locker room, the fines are a function of media attention and the marketability of the player getting hit. And if you accidentally graze the head of a quarterback, it's your ass. (And here we thought that's what helmets were for.) This is when Goodell's PR train permanently went off the rails. Players practice at full speed every week. They smack heads and then go watch it on film. They know everyone is getting hit in the head. The laughably inconsistent enforcement of the head-shot rule makes it clear to the players, or at least the vast majority of them: your brains are expendable.

And now its just getting silly. On the heels of an impassioned plea for safer play, he's aggressively pushing an 18-game season.

I know he's in a negotiation here, but don't put Icy Hot in my jockstrap and ask me why my balls itch. And the manner in which he is selling the longer season to the public insults the intelligence of the players even more. He says that it won't add a single game. It's still a 20-game format. Enough with the 20-game argument. Every player knows that during the four combined preseason games, the starters barely play a total four quarters, if that.

Preseason games are used to evaluate the bubble players who are fighting to make the team. My career owed itself, in no small part, to those preseason games. While the starters rested and prepared for the regular season, I had a chance to prove that I belonged. Take away two of them, and that chance is diminished.

Add two regular-season games, and careers will be shorter and life-changing injuries more frequent. As the body breaks down late in the season, the athlete's strength wanes and the difference between a routine play and a crippling injury gets smaller and smaller. But the pressure to perform never wanes, so the player must soldier on, knowing that if he can't go, someone else will. Players are reminded of that fact almost daily, and no one minces words. The threat of being replaced is a constant. Whether it is Game 2 or Game 18, you ignore the pain. The commissioner is sadly mistaken if he believes otherwise.

A team's training room at the end of the season is a battlefield scene: people lying on tables, things clamped to them, moaning in pain. Injured reserve players stack up as the season drags on. New players are signed to replace them, then suffer the same fate. Snap, crackle, pop. The players who can't practice during the week but end up playing anyway are injured. They shouldn't play; that's why they can't practice. But they get shot up on game day, or they don't, and they play anyway. Their adrenaline is through the roof and the drugs work, so they don't feel the pain that's telling them to stop. F*cking stop! But they don't heed the warnings, no one does, because playing with severe pain is an institutional reality that Goodell is either blind to or too dehumanized to care about. Regardless, the damage is done. More games, more damage.

Now, the picture of Goodell is clear: He is a guy eager to put his stamp on the league; he doesn't care what he is stamping just so long as it has his name on it. Problem is, he is losing the players, one PR gaffe at a time. The NFL is doing just fine on its own. It doesn't need Roger Goodell to be its pimp. Step out of the spotlight, Roger. It's not your show.



Nate Jackson played tight end for the Denver Broncos from 2003 to 2008. His writing has also appeared in Slate and The New York Times.

Sugar
01-07-2011, 07:33 PM
Wow, the guy is calling it as he sees it. I don't know that the race card was needed, but I get where he's coming from.

SanAntonioSteelerFan
01-07-2011, 07:42 PM
Wow, the guy is calling it as he sees it. I don't know that the race card was needed, but I get where he's coming from.

Man, seems like he reads our board!

Crash
01-07-2011, 07:58 PM
Now, the picture of Goodell is clear: He is a guy eager to put his stamp on the league; he doesn't care what he is stamping just so long as it has his name on it. Problem is, he is losing the players, one PR gaffe at a time. The NFL is doing just fine on its own. It doesn't need Roger Goodell to be its pimp. Step out of the spotlight, Roger. It's not your show.

That's the #1 issue. Goodell is too worried about flexing his muscles and showing everyone who is boss. This is nothing but his own version of a football game because his PLAYING career was ended by injuries. He's living his career through this league.

He's a jock sniffer who's clearly in over his head.

DukieBoy
01-07-2011, 08:14 PM
:Agree :Clap :tt2

Djfan
01-07-2011, 08:35 PM
I hope that this is the first letter from former and current players, and that about 23,769 more come out soon.

Sugar
01-07-2011, 09:24 PM
This is a good start. However, I'd love to see something similar from a prominent HOF'er. That would probably gain a lot more traction in the press.

hawaiiansteel
01-07-2011, 09:43 PM
This is a good start. However, I'd love to see something similar from a prominent HOF'er. That would probably gain a lot more traction in the press.


Hines Ward is a future Hall of Famer and he's spoken out several times already about the hypocrisy of the NFL.

Hines Ward blasts NFL for hypocrisy on player safety

By Chris Chase
Wed Dec 01

Doing his best Kanye West impersonation, Hines Ward lashed out against the establishment on Wednesday, boldly claiming the league doesn't care about players.
The Pittsburgh Steelers' all-time leading receiver blasted the NFL for hypocrisy on a number of issues, including player safety, gambling and the 18-game schedule. From the Associated Press:

"The league doesn't care about us anyway. they don't care about the safety of the game. If the league was so concerned about the safety, why are you adding two more games on? You talk about you don't want players to drink ... and all you see is beer commercials. You don't want us to gamble, but then there are NFL-endorsed lottery scratch-off games.

"The illegal-hit penalties are going to change the outcome; somebody's going to lose a game because of it. It's going to be a huge play in a playoff game, somebody's going to hit a quarterback or do something and the referee is going to be too scared to call it. So he's going to call it anyway so he can save his tail. He [the player] may not even get fined or not, but it will come down to the outcome of a ballgame."

I'm glad someone in the league finally called out the NFL for this, it's just too bad it came from a member of the Steelers. Because of all the heat the team has taken of late for James Harrison's fines, this diatribe could be considered sour grapes.

The motive shouldn't detract from the message, though. Ward is right when he calls out the NFL for its convenient morality on drinking and self-righteous stance on player safety. But calling out the NFL (or any major sports league) for being hypocritical is like calling Washington, D.C. corrupt. For better or worse, that's the way it is.

http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/blog/shutdo ... nfl-290933 (http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/blog/shutdown_corner/post/Hines-Ward-blasts-NFL-for-hypocrisy-on-player-sa?urn=nfl-290933)

SteelTorch
01-07-2011, 11:30 PM
Well said!! :Clap I hope this is just one in a loooooooong line of articles protesting this piece of sh** commish!


He says that it won't add a single game. It's still a 20-game format. Enough with the 20-game argument. Every player knows that during the four combined preseason games, the starters barely play a total four quarters, if that.

Preseason games are used to evaluate the bubble players who are fighting to make the team.

^^^ This is exactly what I thought of too. No matter how Goodell tries to dress it up, his vision DOES add extra games for the starters.

Steel Life
01-08-2011, 12:47 AM
My issue with Goodell is his inconsistency, Ben gets flogged in public but Leroy Hill & Perrish Cox avoid suspension, public derision & being made into the poster boy for bad behavior Ben was. Then you factor in the fines on Harrison & the missed roughing calls on Ben & you just begin to wonder - is there a bias? Taking this article into consideration, you could wonder, especially where the P*ts are concerned, since they are always trumpeted as a team & an organization that does things the right way (illegal taping aside of course)...Do the P*ts represent the type of football that Goodell & the people he represents want? Considering the cozy relationship the P*ts have with CBS, Robert Kraft's disproportionate influence on league matters & the P*ts continued luck with referees, is it too much to wonder if the P*ts are the beneficiaries of Goodell's agenda?

Sugar
01-08-2011, 01:03 AM
This is a good start. However, I'd love to see something similar from a prominent HOF'er. That would probably gain a lot more traction in the press.


Hines Ward is a future Hall of Famer and he's spoken out several times already about the hypocrisy of the NFL.

OK, perhaps someone who's not a current Steeler. Sombody like Elway, Marino or Montana.

ALLD
01-08-2011, 09:44 AM
The disparity between the Steelers and the Pats has something to do with the CBA behind the scenes. There has to be a division among the owners.

Goodell is trying to make himself more relevant than the game. Not going to happen.

The best solution would be to use the Rooney Rule and hire a new commissioner who is black. A former player would be best for the owners and players. Lynn Swann comes to mind and he is a Republican.

Sugar
01-08-2011, 10:41 AM
The disparity between the Steelers and the Pats has something to do with the CBA behind the scenes. There has to be a division among the owners.

Goodell is trying to make himself more relevant than the game. Not going to happen.

The best solution would be to use the Rooney Rule and hire a new commissioner who is black. A former player would be best for the owners and players. Lynn Swann comes to mind and he is a Republican.

While I think very highly of Swann, we would run into additional problems there. Anytime anything seemed to even remotely favor the Steelers, it would be blamed on Swann's bias for the team that he played his HOF career for and his loyalty to the Rooney family. Whether real or imagined, we'd always have to contend with it.

Of course, on the other hand, when things didn't favor the Steelers, it would be because Swann was trying too hard to distance himself from his former team and not play favorites, yada, yada...

That said, I would indeed like to see the Commissioner's power checked/balanced more. Perhaps a council with rotating Directors might work or some other such structure.

flippy
01-08-2011, 11:09 AM
Is Goodell the problem or is it the team owners?

Goodell is a puppet.

The greedy owners want more money at the expense of the players. But pitting the players against the owners and their teams would harm the fans' perception of the league and their teams.

So if we create an artificial enemy to deflect the criticism away from the owners and their teams, it's easier for the NFL to maximize revenue.

And maximizing the revenue helps the players too because there's a bigger pie of overall revenue for everyone and arguing over % really becomes insignificant to a degree.

Goodell takes protecting the shield of the NFL to a new level. He has become the shield.

The only loser in this game is the fan. While our anger stays misguided toward Goodell, our prices go up and we accept it. Even while the economy sucks for the middle class.

The rich get richer. The poor stay poorer. And society remains enslaved to the wealthy.

Sugar
01-08-2011, 11:29 AM
To me, this isn't about Class warfare and all that. Let the owners make their money. They've each made a huge investment and they should do what they can to profit from it. No problem there.

My reasons for wanting to see Goodell checked aren't about that. It's the way that what he says goes, no matter what. Now I suppose the owners could oust him if they were actually unified on that point. They could not renew him at contract time. That still leaves too much room for him to do damage to the game, IMO.

BURGH86STEEL
01-08-2011, 11:39 AM
Is Goodell the problem or is it the team owners?

Goodell is a puppet.

The greedy owners want more money at the expense of the players. But pitting the players against the owners and their teams would harm the fans' perception of the league and their teams.

So if we create an artificial enemy to deflect the criticism away from the owners and their teams, it's easier for the NFL to maximize revenue.

And maximizing the revenue helps the players too because there's a bigger pie of overall revenue for everyone and arguing over % really becomes insignificant to a degree.

Goodell takes protecting the shield of the NFL to a new level. He has become the shield.

The only loser in this game is the fan. While our anger stays misguided toward Goodell, our prices go up and we accept it. Even while the economy sucks for the middle class.

The rich get richer. The poor stay poorer. And society remains enslaved to the wealthy.
I agree.

Goodell is doing what the owners want. It appears the players are willing to play under the current agreement. The owners don't like the current agreement. The owners are unwilling to open up their books to prove they are losing money. Congress pushed the safety initiative on the NFL. It's an initiative the NFL should had addressed years earlier before Goodell became commish. The owners want to add 18 games and take money away from players. I think the owners put Goodell in a no win situation.

YoungMoneyCrew
01-08-2011, 11:48 AM
I probably agree with everything the guy wrote but I stopped reading as soon as he dropped the race card. That stuff is overplayed. Goodell might be a freaking idiot but he publicly flogged a young white qb with 2 superbowl rings worse then anyone this season. COME ON MAN!

Sugar
01-08-2011, 12:42 PM
I probably agree with everything the guy wrote but I stopped reading as soon as he dropped the race card. That stuff is overplayed. Goodell might be a freaking idiot but he publicly flogged a young white qb with 2 superbowl rings worse then anyone this season. COME ON MAN!

Yeah, the race card was distasteful to me as well. The fact is, that never needed to even be used because it hurts the greater argument, IMO.

flippy
01-08-2011, 12:49 PM
I probably agree with everything the guy wrote but I stopped reading as soon as he dropped the race card. That stuff is overplayed. Goodell might be a freaking idiot but he publicly flogged a young white qb with 2 superbowl rings worse then anyone this season. COME ON MAN!

Yeah, the race card was distasteful to me as well. The fact is, that never needed to even be used because it hurts the greater argument, IMO.

I always lacked respect for the race card until I moved south and realized all these knuckleheads down here still celebrate and have pride over their role in the Civil War.

It'd be like Germans flying Nazi flags today.

Djfan
01-08-2011, 01:27 PM
I probably agree with everything the guy wrote but I stopped reading as soon as he dropped the race card. That stuff is overplayed. Goodell might be a freaking idiot but he publicly flogged a young white qb with 2 superbowl rings worse then anyone this season. COME ON MAN!

Yeah, the race card was distasteful to me as well. The fact is, that never needed to even be used because it hurts the greater argument, IMO.

I always lacked respect for the race card until I moved south and realized all these knuckleheads down here still celebrate and have pride over their role in the Civil War.

It'd be like Germans flying Nazi flags today.


Isn't that just them celebrating their heritage? Sounds like PC Tolerance to me!!

As for Goodell, he is a puppet? Then he is dumber than I thought.

Let's replace him with Condi Rice. She wants the job and seems like she takes no BS.

YoungMoneyCrew
01-08-2011, 01:39 PM
I probably agree with everything the guy wrote but I stopped reading as soon as he dropped the race card. That stuff is overplayed. Goodell might be a freaking idiot but he publicly flogged a young white qb with 2 superbowl rings worse then anyone this season. COME ON MAN!

Yeah, the race card was distasteful to me as well. The fact is, that never needed to even be used because it hurts the greater argument, IMO.

Agreed.

flippy
01-08-2011, 05:44 PM
Isn't that just them celebrating their heritage? Sounds like PC Tolerance to me!!

As for Goodell, he is a puppet? Then he is dumber than I thought.

Let's replace him with Condi Rice. She wants the job and seems like she takes no BS.

Interestingly, only 3% of the people in the south had slaves. It was just a tiny slice of the uber rich cotton and rice plantation owners. But the people that fly the confederate flags don't appear to come from generations of money or power. So I don't see how they can rightfully claim this heritage. Not that I can even understand who would want to claim a screwed up heritage like this any way.

The only thing I've learned by being interested in history is that tracing the path of money usually reveals the truth about people. And the money points to Goodell being a puppet. But he's well taken care of for his role, so I'm not sure how dumb I'd call that.

I used to think Condi was trying to sleep her way into the job several years back. She seems smart, but it's hard to trust a politician. Heck, I don't trust Goodell either, so maybe it makes sense.

Mister Pittsburgh
01-08-2011, 08:23 PM
Funny the dude pulls the race card out, when the player he pretty much wrote that section about (fine based on media attention) is a white boy, Ben. The other players to cause trouble last offseason were our white kicker and our white 2nd TE. Race card wasn't needed, but the rest of the article hit a bullseye.

feltdizz
01-08-2011, 10:41 PM
I probably agree with everything the guy wrote but I stopped reading as soon as he dropped the race card. That stuff is overplayed. Goodell might be a freaking idiot but he publicly flogged a young white qb with 2 superbowl rings worse then anyone this season. COME ON MAN!

Yeah, the race card was distasteful to me as well. The fact is, that never needed to even be used because it hurts the greater argument, IMO.

I always lacked respect for the race card until I moved south and realized all these knuckleheads down here still celebrate and have pride over their role in the Civil War.

It'd be like Germans flying Nazi flags today.


Isn't that just them celebrating their heritage? Sounds like PC Tolerance to me!!

As for Goodell, he is a puppet? Then he is dumber than I thought.

Let's replace him with Condi Rice. She wants the job and seems like she takes no BS.

maybe it is heritage but it sure seems like they are trying to hold onto a way of life that is long gone.

feltdizz
01-08-2011, 10:46 PM
Isn't that just them celebrating their heritage? Sounds like PC Tolerance to me!!

As for Goodell, he is a puppet? Then he is dumber than I thought.

Let's replace him with Condi Rice. She wants the job and seems like she takes no BS.

Interestingly, only 3% of the people in the south had slaves. It was just a tiny slice of the uber rich cotton and rice plantation owners. But the people that fly the confederate flags don't appear to come from generations of money or power. So I don't see how they can rightfully claim this heritage. Not that I can even understand who would want to claim a screwed up heritage like this any way.

The only thing I've learned by being interested in history is that tracing the path of money usually reveals the truth about people. And the money points to Goodell being a puppet. But he's well taken care of for his role, so I'm not sure how dumb I'd call that.

I used to think Condi was trying to sleep her way into the job several years back. She seems smart, but it's hard to trust a politician. Heck, I don't trust Goodell either, so maybe it makes sense.

I find it hard to believe that only 3% of the southern population owned slaves unless slaves were counted in the population.

Why in the hell would you think Condi was sleeping her way to the top? Nothing about her is sexual IMO and to even suggest she was hoeing here way to the top is kinda racial IMO.

Djfan
01-09-2011, 03:25 PM
Isn't that just them celebrating their heritage? Sounds like PC Tolerance to me!!

As for Goodell, he is a puppet? Then he is dumber than I thought.

Let's replace him with Condi Rice. She wants the job and seems like she takes no BS.

Interestingly, only 3% of the people in the south had slaves. It was just a tiny slice of the uber rich cotton and rice plantation owners. But the people that fly the confederate flags don't appear to come from generations of money or power. So I don't see how they can rightfully claim this heritage. Not that I can even understand who would want to claim a screwed up heritage like this any way.

The only thing I've learned by being interested in history is that tracing the path of money usually reveals the truth about people. And the money points to Goodell being a puppet. But he's well taken care of for his role, so I'm not sure how dumb I'd call that.

I used to think Condi was trying to sleep her way into the job several years back. She seems smart, but it's hard to trust a politician. Heck, I don't trust Goodell either, so maybe it makes sense.


They are from the South and identify with that part of the Southern heritage. Simple.

As for the 3% slave owners, who mentioned slave owners? Not me. It's a heritage, not a wealth thing, IMO.

Also, most celebrations of heritage are about long-gone identities. Kwanzaa? Cinco de Mayo? Order of the Orange? It's all a non-returning issue, but an identity for an identifiable group.

feltdizz
01-09-2011, 04:50 PM
when a part of a person's proud heritage includes trying to break away from the Union and keeping a race enslaved and raping, beating and killing them with little or no remorse best believe people will question them over it.

Ghost
01-09-2011, 04:58 PM
It also doesn't help that, in the eyes of the players, Goodell couldn't find his balls when he was in the same room with Brett Favre and a bagful of evidence. Roger could have given him a fitting retirement party, but he punked out.

Probably my favorite part. It's ridiculous the way this "investigation" was conducted and concluded. And we will NEVER know the extent of the cheating that went on with the Pats b/c of this clown.

I wish more players would publically speak about hating this guy. It makes me sick to think about a lost season in 2012 but if it defined his legacy and put an end to his leadership it'd be worth it.

Djfan
01-09-2011, 04:59 PM
when a part of a person's proud heritage includes trying to break away from the Union and keeping a race enslaved and raping, beating and killing them with little or no remorse best believe people will question them over it.


Name one civilization or culture that is clean in this area. I'm not condoning it, but admit that the history of man is ugly. Why are some allowed, and others not? The paradigm of the culture at the time. Right now it's very PC. In the future? Who knows.

feltdizz
01-09-2011, 05:11 PM
when a part of a person's proud heritage includes trying to break away from the Union and keeping a race enslaved and raping, beating and killing them with little or no remorse best believe people will question them over it.


Name one civilization or culture that is clean in this area. I'm not condoning it, but admit that the history of man is ugly. Why are some allowed, and others not? The paradigm of the culture at the time. Right now it's very PC. In the future? Who knows.

There are none... but it's rare for people to celebrate/wave the flag of that time period on a daily basis.

Nothing wrong with celebrating heritage for a month or a day... but when I was in Richmond VA they wouldn't give MLK a holiday without adding Lee and Jackson to it..

South Carolina still fly's the confederate flag by city hall...

Trust me... it's not very PC in the South. They do a great job living in the past and preserving it.

Germany isn't allowed to celebrate their Nazi past... I can't imagine the British being able to wave their flag all over the NE area.

In history the losers don't write the history but the South does a great job in preserving theirs... that isn't PC IMO.. most cultures wouldn't let that fly.

Djfan
01-09-2011, 09:01 PM
It makes me sick to think about a lost season in 2012 but if it defined his legacy and put an end to his leadership it'd be worth it.


Completely agree!!

SteelTorch
01-09-2011, 09:39 PM
Is Goodell the problem or is it the team owners?

Goodell is a puppet.

The greedy owners want more money at the expense of the players. But pitting the players against the owners and their teams would harm the fans' perception of the league and their teams.

So if we create an artificial enemy to deflect the criticism away from the owners and their teams, it's easier for the NFL to maximize revenue.

And maximizing the revenue helps the players too because there's a bigger pie of overall revenue for everyone and arguing over % really becomes insignificant to a degree.

Goodell takes protecting the shield of the NFL to a new level. He has become the shield.

The only loser in this game is the fan. While our anger stays misguided toward Goodell, our prices go up and we accept it. Even while the economy sucks for the middle class.

The rich get richer. The poor stay poorer. And society remains enslaved to the wealthy.
I agree.

Goodell is doing what the owners want. It appears the players are willing to play under the current agreement. The owners don't like the current agreement. The owners are unwilling to open up their books to prove they are losing money. Congress pushed the safety initiative on the NFL. It's an initiative the NFL should had addressed years earlier before Goodell became commish. The owners want to add 18 games and take money away from players. I think the owners put Goodell in a no win situation.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Goodell's action of mercilessly fining the players take AWAY money from the team owners? :?