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Did Roger Goodell Do More Harm Than Good By Holding A Press Conference With Reporters Yesterday?

Submitted by on September 20, 2014 – 9:56 amNo Comment

When did the NFL first see the Ray Rice tape? Why didn’t Rice receive a longer suspension initially prior to the tape coming out? And how did the league manage to bungle Rice’s situation so badly? Those are just a few of the questions that reporters—and average, everyday NFL fans—have been asking for the last few weeks. So on Friday afternoon, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made his first public appearance in more than a week in New York City and held a press conference with reporters to try and answer some of those questions. And he did, quite frankly, a terrible job.

Goodell started out his press conference by talking about how he thinks he could have done a much better job in handling Rice’s suspension. He also talked about the league’s shortcomings with regards to both Rice and other players’ suspensions in recent months. And finally, he opened the press conference up to reporters and let them ask him all of their questions. And then, he ducked and dodged every question as best he could, reiterating that the NFL needs to do a better job policing itself in the future—but failing to say much of anything in most of his answers. He disappointed many current and former NFL players with the press conference and did little to silence those who think that he should be out of a job right now.

Because of this, a lot of people lost faith in Goodell yesterday. He acknowledged that he made a mistake with regards to Rice, but he didn’t really tell the world how he plans on changing the NFL’s policies in the future. Instead, his answer to every problem plaguing the NFL right now seems to be to hire more experts and to rethink the way the NFL has done things in the past.

In theory, a lot of what Goodell said during his press conference made sense. But at this point, he’s had more than enough time to do more than just offer up vague responses to reporters’ questions. And because of this, he really hurt himself—and the NFL—yesterday. He could have and should have done a much better job.

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