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Goodell says he’s close with players he suspended


Most players disapprove of the performance of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, thanks in significant part to the heavy hand he has used in player discipline. But Goodell says he has often built close relationships with players he had to suspend.

Goodell said on Live with Kelly and Michael that once he gets to know a player who violates the league’s personal-conduct policy, he’s often able to find common ground.

“My closest relationships are really with a lot of the guys I’ve had that kind of interaction with, on discipline,” Goodell said.

Asked by ex-Giant-turned-morning TV host Michael Strahan what the toughest part of his job is, Goodell pointed to discipline. But he also cited Michael Vick as an example of a player whose disciplinary issues led to a good relationship.

“I think the toughest, Michael, is whenever you’re dealing with some of the player discipline issues,” Goodell told Strahan. “I don’t spend an awful lot of time on that — it’s a very small part of my job. But when you’re dealing with young people who have made mistakes, and they pay a big price — Michael Vick is a good example of that, it was a difficult time. But when you see somebody accept responsibility for that, and say, ‘I want to make a difference in the world,’ and I think Michael has done that, it’s easy for me to get behind them.”

Maybe to boost his approval rating, Goodell needs to suspend more players.

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23 Responses to “Goodell says he’s close with players he suspended”
  1. Brad Smith says: Apr 23, 2013 12:15 PM

    There he goes again… playing the “PR” card. Roger Goodell is a product of politics. His wife worked for Fox News. Never seen a sports commission playing politician. His motives usually lie in manipulation and spin.

  2. bucrightoff says: Apr 23, 2013 12:17 PM

    Well yeah, keep your friends close and your enemies closer

  3. blacknole08 says: Apr 23, 2013 12:18 PM

    People are gonna give the commish a hard time just because, but I respect what he said here. It’s easy to give up on someone who has messed up, and one thing I can honestly say about Goodell is that he gives these players a fair second chance.

    Too many of these young athletes tend to be repeat offenders, and having a stronger influence in their lives can help steer them on a good path. It should be an ongoing discussion — it doesn’t take much for these guys to head back in the wrong direction.

    NFL may stand for “Not for long,” but it is refreshing to have a commish who, given his faults as well as prestige, doesn’t see these guys as something to discard once they are disciplined.

  4. shrimpboots says: Apr 23, 2013 12:24 PM

    This is no different than the principal in the middle school who knows all the bad kids because they show up to the principal’s office more than the good kids.

  5. butthatmakestoomuchsense says: Apr 23, 2013 12:25 PM

    “Goodell says he’s close with players he suspended”.

    I truly feel sorry for anyone that believes this.

  6. ijahru says: Apr 23, 2013 12:28 PM

    if Vick was a backup offensive lineman Goodell would not have bent ove backwards to help him the way he did Vick.

  7. Brad Smith says: Apr 23, 2013 12:31 PM

    People care too much about the personal lives or troubles of NFL athletes. If you check the statistics, NFL athletes get in trouble less than national average of everyday Americans. NFL off-field critics are a dum-down group of NFL fans.

  8. dor1963 says: Apr 23, 2013 12:44 PM

    For the first year in I don’t know how long… I am not watching the draft as I can’t bear the bear hugs from this utter moron ruining the league at every turn. I am sure I am not the only one switching off the television and listening to the local broadcast on the radio.

  9. canmannac says: Apr 23, 2013 12:45 PM

    yeah Roger you got behind the Saints REAL good…..

  10. heyzeus143 says: Apr 23, 2013 12:45 PM

    I’m sure him and James Harrison share recipes all the time

  11. marvsleezy says: Apr 23, 2013 12:47 PM

    blacknole08 says: it is refreshing to have a commish who doesn’t see these guys as something to discard once they are disciplined.
    You dont see an NFL profit motive by promoting and rehabilitating Mike Vick? You think the commish is this way out of the kindness of his heart?

  12. godofwine330 says: Apr 23, 2013 12:48 PM

    When my boss tried to make me a janitor instead of giving me my old job back when I got back from deployment overseas and I had to go to the Dept. of Labor to get my job back I didn’t stay close to him. As a matter of fact, I haven’t spoken to him in years (I did change departments twice since then). I always thought that he went overboard on player suspensions, but I definitely wuldn’t be buddy buddy with the guy who suspended me.

  13. fikuserectus says: Apr 23, 2013 12:51 PM

    These players are overpaid and under worked. If they don’t like the way Roger Goodell handles their suspensions then don’t get in trouble and you have nothing to worry about.

    Part of getting paid millions of dollars to play a kids game is that you can’t get in trouble. “Protect the shield”! Players that can’t do that deserve everything they get. I’m sick of the media and players whining. GO GET A REAL job if you don’t like it.

  14. wilsonwillbreaku says: Apr 23, 2013 1:00 PM

    Roger and Michael are like peas and carrots…

  15. 49erstim says: Apr 23, 2013 1:02 PM

    “Approval Rating”?! Who cares whether the players like him or not?! He hands out discipline per the league rules and guidelines. If you don’t get in trouble then you have nothing to fear. Rolando McLain doesn’t like police…. Is that because the cops are trouble makers or because he is? Get real.

  16. melkipershero says: Apr 23, 2013 1:09 PM

    You’re suspended. Now who wants a bear hug??

  17. marcinhouston says: Apr 23, 2013 1:11 PM

    And the players will keep a close relationship with Goodell too, inviting him to BBQs and family outings after they oust him from his position.

  18. cwwgk says: Apr 23, 2013 2:07 PM

    If the players liked him, Goodell wouldn’t be doing his job.

  19. tjacks7 says: Apr 23, 2013 2:14 PM

    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

  20. aintasinner says: Apr 23, 2013 2:45 PM

    Saints player, Scott Shanle, tweeted last year what he believed Roger was whispering in the ear of the drafted player: “Welcome to the NFL! I can’t wait to fine your ass for something!” I think that was probably a good guess.

  21. myeaglescantwin says: Apr 23, 2013 2:53 PM

    yeah.. everyone is cool now.

    wait until the flag show that is the regular season.

    If he stayed on the ref’s hard during previous years, and forced them to throw flags for spearing,,, we wouldn’t have the current “defenseless player” circus that has been causing an uproar for the past 3 years.

    Back to basics.. and making this entire league a powder puff tiptoe dance about.

    i never thought i would see the day when people are flagged for hitting QB’s too hard.

  22. marima07 says: Apr 23, 2013 4:41 PM

    “… But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.”

  23. spedman24 says: Apr 23, 2013 5:40 PM

    Goodell has completely destroyed the nfl from the way he treats injuries to the collusion w/RFA’s. He is a disgrace!

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