When it seems that the bounty case can get no weirder, it somehow does.
After Commissioner Roger Goodell presided over the start-and-stop-and-start-again bounty hearings, the NFL invited a dozen reporters to the league office on Monday. (I couldn’t have made it on short notice, but an invitation would have been nice.) The league shared with them more information about the bounty case. As Gantt pointed out earlier in the hour, Peter King of Sports Illustrated called the league’s case “explosive, compelling.”
And here’s perhaps the most important point. If any of the evidence shown today to an Apostle-sized collection of scribes wasn’t given to the NFLPA and the four suspended players on Friday, Peter needs to add another word to his description.
The CBA requires the NFL to produce three days in advance any evidence the NFL will be using at the hearing. If there is indeed “explosive, compelling” evidence, it apparently wasn’t among the information the league tendered to the NFLPA on Friday. And so that evidence can’t be used by the NFL at the appeal hearing.
So either the NFL did a fantastic job of propping up items such as Sean Pamphilon’s ridiculously rambling 10,000-plus-word manifesto during the dog-and-pony show, or the NFL showed the reporters evidence that the NFL failed to give to the suspended players and their union.
If the latter is the truth, there’s something very wrong with this picture.