Friday, October 19, 2012

Goodell recuses himself from Saints Bounty appeals

Roger Goodell
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has handed over the hearings on the alleged Saints Bounty Program to someone else.

That someone: former Commish Paul Tagliabue.

Goodell made the announcement Friday after after speaking to the NFLPA and others who were all in agreement with the decision.

Goodell has been the target of several players including Jonathan Vilma and most recently former Minnesota Vikings defensive lineman Jimmy Kennedy, who was accused of being the "Whistleblower" in the whole incident. Kennedy vehemently denies the accusation.

Read that story from RIGHT HERE 

As for the decision, Goodell said; "I have held two hearings to date and have modified the discipline in several respects based on my recent meetings with the players. To bring this matter to a prompt and fair conclusion, I have appointed former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagilabue to serve as the hearing officer for the upcoming appeals. Paul Tagliabue is a genuine football authority whose tenure as commissioner was marked by his thorough and judicious approach to all matters. He has many years of experience in the NFL collective bargaining matters and an impeccable reputation for integrity."   

Interesting. The takeaway here is pretty simple. The Jolly Roger is trying to get the focus off of himself and onto the issue at hand. The players involved have maintained from the get-go, the punishment is a vendetta or an out and out lie on the part of the Commish. This hopefully will take that out of the equation.

It won't eliminate the suit filed by Vilma nor take the heat off from the other players involved. But it will help Goodell in the P.R war. And really that is the war that is in play here.

For his part, Tagliabue will have to get up to speed fairly quick. But he is a smart guy, and the guess is that won't be much of a problem. The question will be, "How will he wade through this mess?"       

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