It's time for some therapy. Every week in the NFL, players, coaches, media, fans, and etc, say or do something that ticks me off. I'm sure that I'm not the only one. So, after all of the games are played from the previous week I give myself and the people that read this article a little therapy. I do this by venting about some of the things people or saying or doing in the ford of NFL football. I just can't give a pass to some of these individuals and somebody has to argue the other side. Let's dive right into some of the topics that people seem to be giving a pass.
Roger Goodell thinks he's the Godfather
It's always hard to talk about Roger Goodell because I don't know where to start. Goodell seems to be running a dictatorship and doesn't care what anybody else says. The guy thinks he's the Godfather. The main objection I have with the Commish is the constant rambling he does without saying anything. In his latest nationwide interview, Bob Costas asked Goodell about the Brett Favre / Jenn Sterger situation and he sounded more like Lois Griffin running for Mayor then a commissioner of a major sports organization. When he's asked a question he just rambles and puts "big words" together with no actual meaning behind them.
He's always quick to change the subject and no one ever calls him out about it. When asked about concussions in the interview he mentions the US military and talks about how they are doing studies on concussions. Huh? What does that have to do with the excessive fines he's handing out and him playing judge and jury on this topic? Because he mentioned the military were we suppose to be like, "oh, he's patriotic, don't question him on concussions anymore"? The annoying part of it is that it worked as Costas moved on to a different line of questioning.
Costas: "How close are you to making a decision?"
Goodell: "I've got an initial report, I'm following up with a couple areas, and my staff is going to get back to me. But I hope to reach a conclusion soon."
Costas: "You've got to do something soon, right?"
Goodell: "Yes, but I want to make sure we do what's right. We've been very serious, we've been very thoughtful, we've been very thorough and we're going to continue to do that. We take this issue very seriously and I want to make the right decision."
Costas: "But some decision, I'm inferring, will be made before the season is over?"
Goodell: "I expect to."
Costas: "One of the subplots of this season has been your effort to curtail head injuries by cracking down on helmet-to-helmet hits on defenseless players. Many coaches and players seem to be on board with that initiative, others have bristled at it ... Can you really change the culture of the sport?"
Goodell: "I think we can. I think we have. The players' safety has to be our priority and it is our priority throughout the NFL. I think there are certain techniques that have been identified to be dangerous, not only to the individuals being hit but also the individual doing the striking. And we can change the game for the better, change behavior, and make the game safer for everybody."
Costas: "What would you say to the parents of an athletically gifted 12- or 13-year-old boy, who say, 'Mr. Commissioner, we are lifelong NFL fans. We love the game. But knowing what we know now about the risk of catastrophic injury and perhaps the long-term effects, we're not going to allow our son to play football.' What would you say?"
Goodell: "I talk to those parents and what's happening in the NFL is there is great awareness of concussions and the proper treatment for those injuries. And we have to do everything we can to make our game safer, but also every other sport. Concussions happen in other sports and they happen in life, and we have to make sure we're doing everything possible to treat those properly. And I think when you do, you can go on and live obviously a very healthy life, and that's what we're all interested in doing."
Costas: "They can happen in any sport, and they do, but they happen, as you know, with greater frequency in football than any other North American team sport. It's just part of the game."
Goodell: "They also happen outside of sports. One of the things that's been most intriguing as we've been going through all this is our U.S. military and how they're having to deal with return to battlefield. And the NFL, through its work, has really helped our military be able to address this issue for men and women overseas who are defending our country, make sure we're dealing with their concussions in an appropriate way. The work that we've done, the research that we've done including return to play, they have returned to battlefield."
Costas: "Earlier tonight on this program, Charles Woodson said that he's completely against an 18-game season ... Earlier this year Hines Ward said the league is hypocritical ... What do you say in response?"
Goodell: "I understand our players' safety has always got to be the priority and it will be. We are playing a 20-game format. It's clear from both the players and our fans that preseason is not something they're interested in. Unfortunately, players get injured in the preseason also. We have to go back and look at everything we're doing from preparing our players in the off-season to training camps to the regular season to make sure we're doing everything we can to make it safe. But we also have to make sure we take our game forward and into the future, and figure out a way to do it responsibly."
Favre / Sterger
As for the Favre / Sterger issue, most people could either care less about what actions they do or do not take. There are 2 games left in the season, they guy has a concussion, and a suspension now would be meaningless.
When asked if Goodell would make a decision soon, his response was that he hoped he would. He didn't want to make any rush decisions. He has to be kidding. What else is he looking for? It's apparent he's trying to string this out to the end of the year. Favre means a lot to the NFL and doesn't want to lose any value off of Favre's legacy or have him miss any possible playing time if it's possible he could play again.
18 Game Season
If Goodell wants an 18 game regular season, you best believe he'll do whatever he needs to do to get it. He's the Godfather.... It's a done deal.
Patriots & Spygate
Last week we covered Spygate and I received tons of loving emails and comments from my dear Patriots' followers. Who knew someone would get so worked up by a simple question, "Are the New England Patriots Cheating AGAIN?"I never said the Patriots were cheating again, it was a question. Seeing how I was called a simple minded, country boy from Texas (from South Carolina actually), I'll give you a country saying. "A hurt dog yelps." Let me translate for my far superior, intellectual counterparts from the Northeast. It means that if you fill guilty for something, then you take more hostility towards an implication of wrong doing.
I've asked several questions about other teams but their fans didn't react the way the devoted, educated, superior, Patriots fans did. And why am I brining up Spygate again? Well first of all the Patriots cheated and you all should be reminded of that every so often as the punishment didn't fit the crime. That and this was another Roger Goodell fault. Destroying the evidence was shameful and there is absolutely no reason to do it unless you have something to hide. None. What court of law ever destroyed evidence? In a court of law, you are breaking the law if you destroy evidence. Yes I know, there was no court involved here, but Goodell's actions showed the inability of the NFL to be able to police itself and damaged its credibility with the NFL's educated fans. BTW – If you are a Patriots fan or any fan of that matter and can give be a good reason for destroying the evidence, I'd like to hear it.
Well that's another week of football therapy in the books. I hope I hit on some of the issues that raised your blood pressure. If you have something that bugs you, shoot me an email, if it set me off too we'll talk about it here. After all, this is your therapy as much as mine. See you next week, where I'm sure someone will have done something stupid and I'll beat it into the ground until I feel I've vented for everyone who was upset by it.
Look for NFL Game Day on Sunday mornings, bringing you the match-ups and what to look for in each of that week's games. - Jayson Braddock
Jayson appears on Sports Radio 790 AM in Houston, TX, every Thursday morning at 11:19 am CST as the football insider on the Dylan Gwinn show. He's a graduate of the Sports Management World Wide Football GM & Scouting Course and has been mentored by former NFL player / executive John Wooten and Sporting News.com NFL Draft Expert Russ Lande. His work is mostly appreciated by die-hard fans interested in every little detail about their team and not just watered down mainstream talk. - Listeners NOT in the Houston metropolitan area can hear Jayson on iheart radio or sports7910.com.
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