The NFL Chronicles

On March 26, 2014, in Sporting News, by Buddy TB

NFLAt the annual NFL owners meeting down in Orlando, Florida, Commissioner Roger Goodell narrowed the league’s major objective down to one word: ‘respect’, and he had a very valid point.

Most of the meetings were centered on the rules and possible changes to them and NFL policies in general. About the same things that they discuss every year.  However, this year the topics at the meetings were expanded to include employee’s conduct and the entire culture thing surrounding professional football. To what standards should these ‘employees’ be held? Will the standards be set up only for players or will everyone employed by the NFL be under scrutiny?

Present at the meeting were the NFL team owners, the executives or front office personnel, coaches and staff. Goodell was quite pointed when addressing them concerning the future of the NFL.  He hammered home the respect idea in no uncertain terms.

The commissioner touched on the issue of player safety, acknowledging his office’s previous commitments, but obviously anxious to move on the other themes. The league has had a variety of problems come up in recent months and Goodell went directly to address some of those issues.

Foremost on many minds at the meeting was the issue of the Dolphin’s bullying scandal which everyone hopes will just go away and never surface again. After all, these players are all reasonably mature adults. At least they should be by the time they reach that level. The players themselves should be able to make ‘bullying’ in the locker room a non-issue, and the league should give them a shot to fix the problem ‘in house’.

Then we have the new aspect of openly gay players working in the NFL alongside everyone else.  Concerns over locker room etiquette are simply ridiculous in assuming that problems would arise from gay athletes dressing beside the rest of the team. Once again, the players themselves should be able to handle this one without intervention from the commissioner’s office.

The same applies to the use of the infamous ‘N word’ which is so prevalent in our culture today. Making rules against the use of a word, any word, strikes at being down right un-American. Let’s hope that the league and the players can come up with a better solution.

One very uncomfortable topic that surely came up during the meetings was the subject of NFL team owners getting arrested for drunken driving and drug possession. Wouldn’t you like to have had that meeting bugged?

 

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