In America, we have the right to elect a new President every four years, but we are stuck with the same terrible NFL Commissioner for as long as his billionaire bosses decide to keep him around. It is time that we demand a change. It is time to impeach Roger Goodell.
Goodell’s NFL is broken. If two ties in one week don’t show that, what will? The football gods are weeping right now. Goodell’s international fixation has our country’s favorite sport resembling soccer friendlies, complete with postgame smiles and jersey exchanges. This is America, Roger. We need winners.
I keep tuning in every Sunday, Monday, and Thursday because I am an uninteresting, 30-something loser, who became indoctrinated by the NFL at a young age and it’s too late for me to tune out, despite the myriad reasons I should. Unfortunately for Goodell, not everyone is as loyal stupid as I am.
NFL TV ratings are down across the board, and contrary to the Commissioner’s internal memo, the Presidential election is not to blame.
Trump and Clinton aren’t the problem, Goodell is. A decade ago, he was granted dictatorship over the greatest professional sport in this country, near the height of its popularity, and in those ten years the league has degenerated into an irredeemable farce. Unfortunately, for fans who would like to see the league improve, that will never happen under Roger’s reign. His bosses are making too much money to consider ousting him.
Conducting presidential elections every four years serves as a performance review. Our President is supposed to represent the people of our country and, as such, should be held accountable for their actions. If the President is doing a proficient job, they may get four more years. If the people are not happy with the President’s performance, the President gets replaced. Getting rid of a President is much easier than getting rid of an NFL Commissioner.
The NFL Commissioner is not elected, he does not work for the fans; he works for the owners and his appointment is until retirement, death, or forcible removal. His job isn’t to protect the sport, the players, or the fans; it is to protect the money. The only way to hurt Roger Goodell’s job security is to hurt NFL owners’ pockets. The primary way to do that is to change the channel, and people have already begun to do so.
Goodell will continue to make excuses for the NFL’s ratings decline, but it’s not concussions, conspiracies, or peaceful protests that are crippling the NFL; it’s the deteriorating product that Goodell has manufactured with his incompetence.
Between poorly-planned rule changes, witch hunts, and PR gaffes, Goodell has bungled pretty much every major decision a Commissioner could make. My complaints about Goodell’s NFL have been documented here before, but each season he gives me new reasons to cheer on his demise. Perhaps it’s the member berries, but instead of progressing, Goodell’s NFL seems to be devolving into some sort of weird 1950’s nostalgia.
The league’s rules should be evolving with the players whose efforts drive the league; instead it is constricting them in every way imaginable. This season, everyone is mystified by the inexplicable crackdown on celebrations with Goodell citing that the league’s players are role models and celebrating — like dancing too close to your partner at the sock hop — is obscene.
Celebrations aren’t allowed to the point that the Seahawks and Cardinals decided not to score a touchdown and ended their game in a 6-6 tie two weeks ago. Worry not, the game only took four-plus hours, plenty of time for those commercials we all can’t get enough of.
Aside from celebrations, other penalties are arbitrary and capricious. I’ve watched football for 30 years and I can’t figure out whether the referees genuinely do not know which rules to enforce or they are getting compensated for TV time. What is a catch? What is pass interference? No one is certain.
What the league currently defines as illegal contact occurs on approximately 80 percent of pass plays and it is up to the individual ref to make a call based on his mood and whether the player in question spoke out against the league earlier that week. Josh Norman received four penalties in one game for illegal use of hands. Hey, remember when Roger Goodell deployed replacement refs for meaningful NFL games? That was four years ago, and we thought that was the bottom.
Nothing about Goodell’s NFL is progressive, including its hypocritical stance on domestic violence and substance abuse. Yesterday, Trent Williams received a four-game suspension for missing a drug test. Was it selfish and dumb of Williams to miss a drug test? Sure, but perhaps he smoked some weed in an attempt to forget how miserable that trip to London must have been and who could blame him for that?
Goodell seems more concerned with expanding the league internationally than fixing the league’s issues with player safety and addiction. He now sends six teams a year, 3,500 miles from home, to play games that no one cares about. Just look at the happy faces of Williams and Desean Jackson last Friday:
Debate the merits of a four-game suspension for a missed drug test all you want. The bigger issue is the inconsistencies of Supreme Emperor Goodell’s suspension policies.
In a professional sports league, policies should be based on gaining an unfair competitive advantage rather that upholding one man’s moral standards. The same moral standards that help Goodell turn a blind eye to the various forms of gambling that line the league’s pockets should not be trusted to rule on the length of time a player should be suspended when he batters his wife.
These guys are role models, right Roger? That’s why they shouldn’t be celebrating in the end zone and smoking doobies. Perhaps it’s too much to ask of the Commissioner to explain to fans why the NFL doesn’t care about domestic violence.
Goodell’s policies and
actions inaction, to this point in his tenure, essentially condone domestic violence, seeing it as a lesser crime than smoking weed — something ex-players are now doing to help offset the adverse effects the NFL had on their lives.
If I could ask the Commissioner one question, it wouldn’t even be about the league that he’s ruined, it would be whether he would prefer to have his daughter date a man who smokes weed on his off days or one that throws her down on a bed full of guns, beats her, and threatens her life, knocks her unconscious in an elevator on a security tape that is replayed on an endless loop, or admits to sadistically assaulting her? On the spectrum of evil, what kind of NFL suspension do these crimes warrant? I felt disgusting typing the words above. Roger Goodell read reports on all three of these scumbags and saw minor suspensions as fair punishments.
When there is an outcry from the public, Goodell hides behind his league’s policies and points fingers. He promises that things will change for the better. They don’t.
While his egregious oversights on the domestic violence suspensions played out, Goodell’s tyrannical ego led him to prosecute the league’s most decorated player all the way to the Supreme Court. I am not going to talk about Deflategate because it is, was, and will always be remembered as dumb. If Goodell were human, he would feel like a moron at this point, but he’s a robot and he thinks he won because Tom Brady eventually surrendered, relegating himself to a four-week vacation of little consequence.
What does the future hold? Goodell’s next monumental failure is shaping up to be player safety. While injuries are on the rise, and the long-term effects of football are exposed, Goodell is pushing to extend the season in any way possible. Preseason, regular season, post season, it doesn’t matter. It’s all revenue to Roger.
Which reminds me, don’t forget to tune in for Thursday Night Football, this and every week!
Speaking of player safety, early retirements and injuries have made the NFL younger than ever — careers are shorter, mistakes are more glaring and most games are generally heinous. This season, the result seems to be that everyone in the league except the Patriots will finish 8-8. This is Roger Goodell’s NFL.
While the poor play has resulted in parity on the field, in the stands things are wilder than Westworld. There are now Power Rankings available for arrests per game in case you were thinking about taking your MMA-loving grandmother to a game (I recommend Oakland).
Pretty nice family-friendly league you’ve got there, Rog.
Did I mention that Goodell made $44 million last year, tax exempt? Meanwhile, the President of the United States made $400,000. Why would anyone want to be President for four years when they could be an NFL Emperor for a lifetime? See you in hell, Roger.
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