Goodell, Ryan Clark have different views about schedule release


Though we didn’t anticipate it like we usually do, the release of the 2011 regular-season schedule brought a much-needed escape from a locked-out NFL.  Like going to a good movie at the end of a crappy day, studying the slate of games gave us a two-hour respite from reality.

But reality is back, and Commissioner Roger Goodell has tried to reconcile the decision to pull the sheet off of the configuration of 256 games with the fact that, if the season were to start today, 16 of the games, at a minimum, wouldn’t be played.

“Clearly, we have some uncertainty with respect to the labor situation, but this is a great day for the fans,” Goodell told Albert Breer of NFL Network.  “We’re doing all we can to prepare for the 2011 season.  We’re announcing the schedule as usual, around this time of year, because we know that is an important point where fans start looking forward to the season, and I think there’s every reason for them to do that.  We have every intention of playing a full schedule, and that’s why we’re releasing it as we normally do.”

So will the games be played?

“We’ve set the schedule up to play the full 16-game schedule, and that’s certainly our intention, that’s how we put the schedule together, and we certainly are working towards that,” Goodell told Breer.

Really, what else can Goodell say at this point?  The fact remains that, until there’s a deal (or an order lifting the lockout), there’s no guarantee that any of the games will be played.

Still, some think the NFL shouldn’t have released the schedule.  Count Steelers safety Ryan Clark among the some.

“Instead of saying, ‘You know what, guys, we’re gonna hold the schedule off until we can figure out this situation,” Clark said Tuesday on ESPN2’s First Take (via, “until we can make sure that the fans have football this year,’ no, ‘We’re gonna put the schedule out and find another way to put my face on TV.’”

We think that’s a little much.  But that didn’t stop Clark from taking it even farther.

“[Former Commissioner] Paul Tagliabue was a guy [who’s] gonna get people in the room [who] can make decisions, whereas throughout these negotiations . . . [Goodell] has to leave for hours to make conference calls and call people who can make decisions,” Clark said.

All due respect, Clark is wrong about that comparison.  For deals of this magnitude, 24 of the 32 owners must approve of anything that is done.  Goodell doesn’t have the ability to overcome that, and neither did Paul Tagliabue.

But we can see why the players would prefer Tagliabue, given that Tagliabue pushed for the bad deal that the owners are now desperately trying to overturn.  The players love the 2006 CBA, and thus they should want the guy who’s doing the current deal to be acting more like the guy who did the last deal.

Either way, there was no reason to hold the schedule until some later date.  Folks need to make plans for the months in which football may happen, whether it’s booking hotel rooms or scheduling weddings (or vasectomies) or planning for a golf weekend when the home team is on its bye.  It makes no sense to determine the schedule and then not publicly share it with the media and the fans.

Though we realize Clark and the other players are getting increasingly frustrated about the lockout, it doesn’t help their cause to make accusations that simply miss the mark.

47 responses to “Goodell, Ryan Clark have different views about schedule release

  1. ‘We’re gonna put the schedule out and find another way to put my face on TV.’

    Hrmmm…and Ryan Clark is saying “I’m gonna make another idiot remark to get the face of another fool player out there on the internet.” These guys don’t have a clue. I’m not a Goodell fan, in general, but to presume that the NFL commissioner should turn into a media recluse because of ongoing CBA discussions is moronic. That logic does not compute.

  2. “But we can see why the players would prefer Tagliabue, given that Tagliabue pushed for the bad deal that the owners are now desperately trying to overturn.”

    When a person prefers the presence of weak competition, its a sign of laziness and weak-mindedness on the part of that person.

  3. Up until now, the 2011 has been this amorphous collection of games we may or may not see. Now that the schedule is out, we know what we’re missing. We know we might not see Dolphins/Cowboys on Thanksgiving. I know I might not see my Bucs at home on Monday night for the first time in eight years. There’s something tangible to lose now, and I think this was a savvy move by the league to put pressure on the players by telling fans, “Here are the actual games that are being put at risk.”

  4. I dissagree Floirio Cookie. Roger Goodell is a knumbnuts-geek that don’t know squat about leading. I wouldn’t pee on him if he was on fire. He is the problem. Geaux Saints!

  5. The more and more this goes on the more resentment I have against the players.. Those who speak out in harsh terms. These NFL players think they’re entitled to bash the commish so rudely and publicly. Why? I do think both sides are trying to work it out and not trying to work it out.. Oh but the players just want to say its Goodell. Stupid. I am not some big supporter of Goodell but I think he’s the best commissioner. I rather have him than Stern or Selig, etc..

  6. Who cares about Clark and the bunch of overgrown babies. Bring on the replacements and start the season on time!!!

  7. The Steelers and Ravens must attend the same “insert foot in mouth” convention. Some players cannot resist the urge to make fools of themselves. It’s hard for any one person to get 2 sides to play nice when both are give me, give me, give me.

  8. And gene upshaw was someone who understood the importance of compromise. While deMoron smith is some turd who wouldn’t backdown from unreasonable demands if his job depended on it.

  9. Every Time a player makes a comment they end up looking stupid, either because they dont know all the facts ( See Ryan Clark) or because they just want to sound like morons (See Adrian Peterson Slave Comment).

    The players would be best served to shut up until after a deal is in place, and make me not wonder anymore how some of them have survived as long as they have.

    You dont see Peyton Manning or Tom Brady running their mouths about this situation.

  10. goodell isn’t godell, theres nothing he could do because the owners decided they are tired of the deal and want a new one. At this point goodell is just hoping the millionares and billionares work something out.

  11. Clark just wants the league to hold back on the schedule so it would appear what the players are doing is having an effect on the day to day business of the NFL.

  12. Clark also added….Boy, that Franklin Delano Roosevelt was one hell of a President…..

  13. @ bmue

    Really? That’s his responsibility? That opinion is about as solid as the use of the term FAIL. The owners and players are responsible for avoiding a work stoppage you clown.

  14. ummm this has been handled badly on both sides, and releasing the schedule was the smart thing to do. you can’t hold onto it until august or whenever these rich jerkoffs that don’t seem to give a f@$#%^ about there fans get this deal done. i mean really it’s 9 BILLION that they need to divy up, it’s gonna take a while. and releasing it now only lets the fans know so they can decide if they even want to go to a game this year, or make other plans. i might just drink a couple of beers and watch the grass grow this year instead of football.

  15. What clark should have said: “We care about the fans but we care about the size of our paychecks more” same goes that knucklehead Goodell.

  16. The schedule does not affect anybody but the NFL network and ESPN so they can produce a show to talk about who has or has not got a fair schedule. These shows are a joke because you have an injury to a top qb or more then this means nothing, it is just another way to fill air space.

  17. you know if we fans all skipped the draft and didn’t watch it and didn’t show up to it maybe that would send a message to the nfl and nflpa that we’re tired of this and it’s time to get a deal done. think about it and boycott the draft!

  18. Clark is very well spoken, but he is missing the point on Goodell vs. Tagliabue.

    I understand his frustration on a schedule release because of the preparation and the uncertainty of the season. But his point seems to be that Goodell is giving fans an empty promise of a full season.

  19. I agree that Ryan’s comments were off base and moronic. Aside from the specific content in Clark’s statement, it seems like there is some real frustration building there. There have been similarly petty comments made by other players, too. If frustration is building, perhaps the players sense that they are facing a more united ownership group than in the past and that they are going to have to bend over unless the judge saves them.

  20. If they hadn’t released it a lot of people would claim that they were perpetuating the lock out and being hard-nosed about their position.

  21. Clark is right – Roger is a clown – anyone older than 12 can see that & he’s no Paul when it comes to running the NFL. He’s simply a ‘yes’ man, a propagandist. Here’s hoping the players crush the owners and Roger in the courts.

  22. joe6606 says:
    Apr 20, 2011 10:27 AM
    “if the season were to start today, 16 of the game, at a minimum, wouldn’t be played.”

    I’ve read, and re-read this sentence 10 times and I still can’t figure out what you were trying to say.

    I think he’s trying to say if we started the season today we’d miss the 1st week of games (16 games)–Which is quite obvious!

  23. More empty posturing for fans. Do you really think anyone is excited when we are all lawyered up with nowhere to go and no tangible progress being made? Do you really think that the release of the schedule is a dig at the players?

    I wonder when fans are going to get smarter.

  24. Well, since the players don’t consider themselves as employees of the owners and more so partners of the owners. I think the owners should simply say, ok you get about 50% of the revenue but you also as a union get to pay 50% of the expenses. Isn’t that how a partnership works???

  25. I think Clark’s biggest mistake is failing to realize that there WILL be games played, and so Godell put out the schedule of those games.
    Where Clark is missing the point is that he and the boyz may not be playing in those games, but there WILL be games.
    Scabs will make piles of money and tv ratings will be high and stadiums will be full, let there be no doubt, Mr. Clark

  26. “Clearly, we have some uncertainty with respect to the labor situation, but this is a great day for the fans,” Goodell told Albert Breer of NFL Network.

    HUH? I’m a fan, Roger. I don’t feel “great”. Mildly interested…..yes. Great…..NO.
    Enjoy being booed off the stage next week at the draft, puppet.

  27. I have no problem with the schedule being released now. It was the appropriate thing to do for the fans. Plans have to be made to be able to attend games. I personally have to look at the games and my work schedule to see which games I can shoot for attending. Hotel rooms need booked. Airfares need researched. Etc.

    As well, the assumption should be made that this stalemate will get resolved. There is just too much money involved for it not to get resolved, even if replacement players have to be used.

    And, as a Steeler fan, I wish Ryan would have kept his mouth shut. I wish all the players and owners and their reps would keep their mouths shut until this gets revolved.

  28. Agree with Clark and poweredtoast – Goodell is a clown. In honesty, his idiocy and arrogance makes my blood boil.

    But about the lockout –

    A) in reality, don’t we have several more months before any critical pre-season milestones are missed? I mean if they come up with a deal sometime during July (or sooner), I think the only missing element of reg season games will be rookie contributions. Vets don’t need minicamps.

    B) Who gives a crap? The harder-hitting brand of football that’s played primarily on Saturdays has become way more enjoyable to watch.

    Go ahead, NFL. Do your best Fonzie and “jump the shark.”

  29. Everyday a group of so called fans comment on every post, talk about how much you resent the players. The players are not the only ones not agreeing to a deal. What is the real beef with D.Smith, he is doing his job(curious). Make you wonder why he seems to focal point of most people disdain with the lockout. Both sides are negoitiating what they think is the best deal for their side. This is free trade. It is ignorant for us fans to assume that either side is negoitiating for what is in our best interest. If I worked at Wal-Mart I would want the best deal for me. All this love of the game and taking care of past players is crap. I feel something should be done for them, but remember that very same group negoitiated a deal of their own years ago. What did they do for former players? They bargained for the best deal for THEM at that time. I believe both sides are greedy, but I also know that if I was in their position I would want the best deal for me. As a matter of fact, I about to go to my bosses office for my annual review. I am going to pursue the best deal for ME and hope negoitiations are successful so that we dont end up in court to determine a work issue. Lastly, (back to the issue at hand), all of you think that the players are morons sound like MORONS. I am a huge football fan (GO STEELERS), and wished I had the talent to play at the highest level. So i pray that both sides get a deal done so I can enjoy the entertainment they provide. I dont favor either side because neither side truly cares about ME nor do I care about who gets wha they desire out of this deal. I will still being making K’s and they will still be Millionaires and Billionaires at the end of the day.

  30. Of course the games will be played as soon as the players get their heads out of their butts. Is it going to take replacement players for the vets to wake up.

  31. I agree with all who detest Roger Goodell as a commissioner. Irrespective of this lockout, I’ve always detested Mr Goodell from day one, fearful of his tenure, and he hasn’t let me down.

  32. Another dumb Steeler with another dumb comment. At least young girls were harmed in the process. Im surprised Harrison hasnt spoken up to show off his well below average I.Q. as well…. This is why NFL players should stick to playing football.

    “It is better to keep one’s mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and resolve all doubt” – Abraham Lincoln

  33. It seems to be that Paul Tagliabue was a lot like Mr. Kruger from Seinfeld and gave the NFLPA whatever they wanted…..’ok, whatever. Now let’s get some ice cream’

  34. Ryan Clark, is a bad safety, a bad analyst on 1st and 10. But I will agree with what he says, the schedule shoulv’e waited til a deal was done. Oh well if a deal gets done in october, I’d like to see if the schedule stays the same or if Mr. I suck as Commish, Goodell has to revamp it and make changes to it. I bet the later happens. Since I don’t think all 16 games will be played I see 12. Unless they push the season back and start it later once the deal gets done!

  35. @easyeintennessee …

    Judging by the colossal ignorance of your comment, you’d need an IQ transplant just to converse with Harrison. No “young girls” have alleged anything regarding any Steelers, and based on the medical report, no Georgia woman advertising herself as “down to f***” managed to do so with any Steelers despite highly publicized tall tales. But thanks for dragging those tired of rape jokes (cute sense of humor you have) into a story on the labor dispute. We’ve certainly never heard them before 🙄

    Your ex- … er, current … er, ex-QB assault any strip club patrons lately? See, we can all play these games.

  36. Ryan … generally I’d prefer you zip it … but that line about Goodell putting his face on TV was hysterical. 😆

  37. man i am just glad PFT isnt slipping in negative comments about the owners. i like when they just say what they think without trying to make one side look bad or good

  38. nice to see all the player shills out today. the schedule coming out and having so many good games at the start of the season is cutting the players legs out from under them.

    and here come the mid tier guys.

  39. also, the players are crying. tags practically reported to capo gino.

    it isnt werking that way nowadays. and the players hired a crooked shill lawyer.

  40. “All due respect, Clark is wrong about that comparison. For deals of this magnitude, 24 of the 32 owners must approve of anything that is done. Goodell doesn’t have the ability to overcome that, and neither did Paul Tagliabue.”

    Mike, what changed? Wasn’t the whole reason Roger was at the previous negotiations because he *did* have the authority to broker deals? Wasn’t that something he had mentioned in interviews? Either I’m remembering something wrong or has something changed with the allowances Goodell was given the first time ’round?

  41. @commandercornpone …

    All the player shills? I’m pretty well outnumbered by you owner hacks, wouldn’t you say? 😉

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