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Report: Goodell has freedom to move “drastically”

NFL Contract Talks Continue As Deadline Approaches Getty Images

As the NFLPA and the NFL continue to meet in Washington during what could be the last day of mediation before Litigeddon, Peter King of Sports Illustrated reports that, during a Thursday conference call with owners, Commissioner Roger Goodell received “the freedom to move drastically, if need be,” to get a deal done with the players.

King also reports that there were some talks Thursday night, and that if some progress could be made on Friday another extension could be negotiated.

He also seems to believe that the players won’t be moving from their demand of audited financial statements, even though we think something less than that would give the NFLPA what it needs to confirm that profits are genuinely down.  Profit information plus detailed data on any payments made to owners and/or family members and/or related companies should be enough to show the true profit the teams have realized.

The report confirms our belief that the league wants to get a deal done.  Indeed, any deal will be better than the deal they have, and their ongoing refusal to open the books has caused many to believe that the current deal isn’t nearly as bad as advertised.

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36 Responses to “Report: Goodell has freedom to move “drastically””
  1. johnjosephyossarian says: Mar 11, 2011 1:16 PM

    Good.

  2. tjp2033 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:21 PM

    So basically the owners are trying to get this done and the players aren’t compromising on anything.

    Now we know why the players keep trying to do the fan PR tour. They are at fault here with not trying to get a deal done. They want the league to lock them out so they look like the victims.

  3. b7p19 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:22 PM

    Come one Roger, be a hero.

  4. madtolive5 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:22 PM

    That is good news since his role has been pretty non existent the past couple weeks.

    Also I don’t think the players need the information to know profits are down. It is probably because they know the owners has phony operating expenses, which should be counted as revenue.

  5. buffalohogan says: Mar 11, 2011 1:23 PM

    This is good news…i really hope the league is considering declaring an impasse. Outside of a new deal, the league making its best offer and then declaring an impasse forcing the players to deal or strike is really best for the fans.

    Why? Well we still get football. Granted Jeff Garcia vs Daunte Culpepper might not be what we want but its better than nothing, plus once the paychecks stop showing up the players will start crossing the picket line.

    Anyone got He Hate Me’s number, buffalo is gonna need a kick returner?

  6. chapnastier says: Mar 11, 2011 1:24 PM

    Have the players agreed to give up anything in this? It seems by all reports that the players have refused to budge on a thing and expect the owners to bend over backwards.

    On a second note, I must say that debating this is far more fun than debating Brett Favre like we have had to do for the past 3 years here lol.

  7. alphaq2 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:24 PM

    Litigeddon…Nice!!! I will venture to bet that if this thing does go to litigation there will be many more blackouts whenever we do have football again. Player and Owners are alienating everyday hardworking people who make all this bickering possible.

  8. buffalohogan says: Mar 11, 2011 1:24 PM

    One other thing the owners should consider…if the players strike and they need replacement players they will undoubetdly destroy their compeition…BYE BYE UFL!

  9. FoozieGrooler says: Mar 11, 2011 1:26 PM

    Dear Roger and NFLPA.
    We, the fans, decided to hell with you.
    We’re keeping our $9 billion, and spending it on trivial things like housing, gas, food and health care.
    You lose.

  10. crackills says: Mar 11, 2011 1:26 PM

    get’er done!

  11. kniddynamite says: Mar 11, 2011 1:27 PM

    At first I was encouraged by this, but then I realized that this leak could simply be tactical on the owners’ part.

    For information from the owners’ conference call to get out, it has to come from some source connected to either Goodell or the owners. Why would they want word to get out that Goodell has been instructed to blink before the deadline? That kills any leverage he might have had.

    The only way this leaked info makes sense is if Goodell or the owners want people to think that they were willing to compromise at the last minute when they have no intention of it.

    I hope I’m wrong.

  12. Akula says: Mar 11, 2011 1:29 PM

    No white smoke….no new Pope.

    Just more guesses and hunches. A deal gets done when it gets done. Nobody knows anything but the people in those rooms. Even though they pretend they do.

  13. awdlmd says: Mar 11, 2011 1:31 PM

    The suits won’t be too happy that got out.

  14. rdssc says: Mar 11, 2011 1:32 PM

    Peter King is an NFL shill. Goodell does not have power to move everything he does still needs to be voted by the owners. Goodell is Jerry Jones lap dog.

  15. descendency says: Mar 11, 2011 1:34 PM

    Now, if a CBA isn’t signed soon, everyone can blame Roger Goodell for holding up the progress.

  16. packerrube13 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:34 PM

    Oh great. The worst Commissioner in all of sports gets to have more power over the CBA negotiations for the best sport on earth.

    This ought to end well.

  17. toe4 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:35 PM

    “even though we think something less than that would give the NFLPA what it needs to confirm that profits are genuinely down.”

    A paper and a pencil at the kitchen table is really all you need.

  18. Kaz says: Mar 11, 2011 1:35 PM

    It’s clear the league is the only side that wants a deal done. Just another example of the league going over and beyond the call of duty to try to make this work. They should lock the players out and open tryouts to local people. I’m down. I’m 6’4 204 I can rush the passer I think. Just let me know where to sign up owners. I’ll play for 50K a year.

  19. awdlmd says: Mar 11, 2011 1:38 PM

    Wow, some of you really bought into the owner’s whole “we’re the only one’s trying” routine.

  20. CJ says: Mar 11, 2011 1:39 PM

    You could almost interpret this article to say that the owners are pulling a fast one here (granted it’s taken a long period of time to play out though).

    Maybe they’re not giving the players what they want because the owners know that the financial statements won’t merit the players agreeing to allowing the owners to take $1b off the top. So now that things are getting close, the owners are pointing out that even if the owners did provide the financial statements in question, the auditors and players’ union won’t have sufficient time to reviewr them before the clock runs out again. Heck, even another month might not be enough to review so much information.

    As a result, they’re putting pressure on the union to force them into a compromise without seeing what they want to see. If the union won’t compromise on this issue, the fan backlash could sway in the league’s favor. Knowing all of this, the league might be milking this thing through the 11th hour, all the while already planning to take the last best offer they get.

    After all, as the article states, whatever they get now if better than what they were getting before, and since the books would remain closed, the players wouldn’t even know they’re getting played.

  21. odessabucs says: Mar 11, 2011 1:39 PM

    As far as payments to family members, I don’t think Jerry Jones wants it to be disclosed that his pet Yorkshire Terrier, “Ed”Too Tall” Jones is on the payroll.

  22. 3octaveFart says: Mar 11, 2011 1:43 PM

    Translation: the owners are getting ready to cave.

  23. dolphan343 says: Mar 11, 2011 1:45 PM

    Laughable. All last summer and season there were reports that Goodell was trying to communicate with Smith who gave them the cold shoulder and proceeded to do the PR and try a few litigations. One worked and now they are out for blood. At the same time the players are professing to have only our best interest and try to get us on their side. Well this is just my opinion but if they would have put half the effort they did in campaigning into negotiating duroing the season instead of waiting for zero hour the fans wouldnt be watching this smear campaign. We would be enjoying FA and the draft speculations like we should be.

    The owners arent the innocents here but I just get a greasy feeling from all the players and Smith who seem to have been hell bent on litigation from the get go while professing to be our champions. They only started to negoatiate really when teh word impasse was brought up and probably just started the negotiations to avoid said impasse.

    Anyways, Im PISSED at both parties but these are my opinions right now.

    Have a good day, thanks.

  24. dboom says: Mar 11, 2011 1:45 PM

    tjp2033 you obviously understand nothing. This entire dispute is because the owners want more out of the fair deal that’s already in place. The fact they don’t want to open the books shows they have something to hide.

    Public opinion is 100% on the side of the players and this justifies that.

  25. realitypolice says: Mar 11, 2011 1:49 PM

    tjp2033 says:
    Mar 11, 2011 1:21 PM
    So basically the owners are trying to get this done and the players aren’t compromising on anything
    ===========================

    Boy, you’re easy. The league leaks something to it’s lap dog about how flexible they are, and you swallow it hook, line, and sinker.

  26. doncornelious says: Mar 11, 2011 1:50 PM

    Git-R-Dun

  27. riverhorsey says: Mar 11, 2011 1:57 PM

    Drastically means virtually anything and i doubt seriously he has that authority.

    it’s more likely a public relations move to make the players look bad should they refuse the deal.

  28. nothimagain says: Mar 11, 2011 1:58 PM

    I still don’t understand this fascination with salaries for friends and family members. One of the attributes of owning a private company is being able to hire and pay whoever and whatever you damn well please.

  29. elmoron says: Mar 11, 2011 2:05 PM

    Kaz says:

    “It’s clear the league is the only side that wants a deal done. Just another example of the league going over and beyond the call of duty to try to make this work. They should lock the players out and open tryouts to local people. I’m down. I’m 6’4 204 I can rush the passer I think. Just let me know where to sign up owners. I’ll play for 50K a year.”

    I may be wrong, but I just don’t think you’d fill the stands.

  30. bcknights says: Mar 11, 2011 2:08 PM

    I thought unions were formed to protect and make sure they have good working conditions. And to get the workers a fair wage. Not to break the company.

  31. elmoron says: Mar 11, 2011 2:08 PM

    nothimagain says:

    “I still don’t understand this fascination with salaries for friends and family members. One of the attributes of owning a private company is being able to hire and pay whoever and whatever you damn well please.”

    Well, it’s not really a private business in the literal sense. The way the NFL is uniquely set up, the players are both partners (essentially investors) and employees.

  32. gridassassin says: Mar 11, 2011 2:14 PM

    Wait and hurry… Wait and hurry…

    This is a broken record – I envision another one week extension coming.

    Something tells me the owners really want to have free agency prior to the NFL draft. It would behoove the veteran free agent players also.

  33. thebaronvb says: Mar 11, 2011 2:22 PM

    “dboom says:
    Mar 11, 2011 1:45 PM
    tjp2033 you obviously understand nothing. This entire dispute is because the owners want more out of the fair deal that’s already in place. The fact they don’t want to open the books shows they have something to hide.

    Public opinion is 100% on the side of the players and this justifies that.’

    I hope you never end up on a jury. You assume that the owners are hiding something becasue they don’t just turn over their accounting. It is not customary for business to open books to anyone. So, before you throw stones about understaning nothing, be sure you don’t live in a glass house.

    And please don’t speak for eveyone, public opinion is not 100% as you put it. I support the owners 100%.

  34. riverhorsey says: Mar 11, 2011 2:24 PM

    Obv if you’re paying your 3rd cousin a half million to manage a concession stand or your wife’s 3rd cousin a million to manage t-shirt sales you’re hiding money.

    you’ve made an under the table deal with them and they actually get a fraction of that and give you back the rest of it.

    they give it back to you of course by sticking it in an offshore bank account.

    pretty simple way to hide money.

  35. beg4greg says: Mar 11, 2011 2:28 PM

    nothimagain says:
    Mar 11, 2011 1:58 PM

    I still don’t understand this fascination with salaries for friends and family members. One of the attributes of owning a private company is being able to hire and pay whoever and whatever you damn well please.
    ———————————————————

    The fascination is that this is an easy means for hiding money in payroll, when in fact its really “profit”. You are absolutely right that an owner has every right to do that. However, if they are crying about how little money they are making and needing to take back money from the players, then this becomes a very obvious way to cut “expenses” to save money and thus not need to take it away from men who are giving up their bodies to the game (for a handsome fee, of course).

    For example, let’s say owner A is claiming that his profits decreased by $20M this year, but then you look at the payroll and his 4 children are on the docket as “consultants” for $5M each, then you can easily make the argument that should they not have those “consultants” on board, their profits would be unchanged.

    The most blatant example is Mike Brown of the Bengals who acts as the GM and pays himself accordingly. Again, he has every right to do that, but he can’t turn around and say “I’m only making ‘x’ amount in profit, so we need money back”, when in fact he is also taking a salary that he is pocketing.

    In short, the players should not have to give anything up for the owners to pay their cronies whatever they want. Again, they have every right to do whatever they want with their own money, but now they are talking about taking the players’ money…

  36. jerseydevil856 says: Mar 11, 2011 2:57 PM

    Goodell should fine and suspend them all for conduct detrimental to the league.

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