Brees sidesteps question of whether he trusts the Commissioner


Saints quarterback Drew Brees made a stir (intentionally or otherwise) last week by saying about Commissioner Roger Goodell on behalf of all players:  “Nobody trusts him.  Nobody trusts him.”

Brees received an opportunity to speak on his own behalf during an interview with NFL Network’s Marshall Faulk before Sunday night’s Hall of Fame game.

“Do I trust the Commissioner?” Brees said.  “I think that Commissioner Goodell has done a lot of great things for this league.  It just happens to be that, in this instance, with the bounty, I think that the league and he have gotten this one wrong.  And we all have the opportunity to re-evaluate this and make it right, come to a positive resolution and do it together.  And be very open and transparent about it.”

Faulk didn’t press Brees for a yes-or-no response, and it’s unclear whether Brees would have given one.  But it’s clear that, as to the bounty case, Brees trusts nothing the league has said or done.

“The most disturbing thing is the process, the process by which this whole thing was unveiled,” Brees said.  “The intentions were never made clear from the very beginning.  I think coaches and players alike were kind of brought in to talk to the Commissioner and the league under false pretenses, and all of a sudden it’s just like a media firestorm and evidence and things are getting leaked to the media, things are being reported that are proven to be untrue in a lot of cases.  And yet it’s out there.  The perception has been created nationally for fans and all those that love our game that there was something illegal going on here.  And that’s everything against what we stand for.  And that’s why we fought so vehemently to prove that’s not the case.”

Brees also danced around the question of whether the union should have insisted on appeals processes that removed full power over the decision and any appeals from the Commissioner.

“The fact of the matter is are the allegations true or not?” Brees said.  “Are there facts and proof in evidence to back that up, besides just supposed, corroborated evidence between disgruntled employees?  Has there been anything concrete that you can show that this indeed happened?   To this point nobody’s seen anything.  We’ve been told — everyone’s been told that it’s there.  Nobody’s seen it.  So it would just make you think maybe there’s not.  And all I’m saying is we have an opportunity to make it right.  The season’s almost here, there’s a lot at stake.  I just hope that that can be accomplished.”

Brees is right.  The evidence that has been leaked or otherwise provided by the league has has gaping holes.  There still is no persuasive evidence of intent to injure.  That’s why the NFL needs to make it clear that intent is irrelevant.  That the rules prohibit offering players money for applying clean, legal hits in a way that inflicts injury, regardless of intent.

The league seems to be moving closer to acknowledging that fact, even if it means embracing a debate regarding whether it’s a problem to offer a little cash (or a helmet sticker) to a guy who does his job cleanly and legally in a way that keeps an opponent from doing his job.

21 responses to “Brees sidesteps question of whether he trusts the Commissioner

  1. He danced around it because he didn’t want to be scrutinized by the media for his answer, but not realizing he will still be scrutinized no matter what he says for answer. Such as the media goes these days.

  2. Before Brees starts preaching transparency he should first explain why at least one of his teammates admittedly lied to league investigators.

  3. One needs to look no further than the New Orleans home newspaper today in which Duncan says the Saints had a program that paid for injuries.

  4. If you trust GOODELL before Bree’s and you say you don’t like GOODELL your dumb. It’s just that simple but I have a feeling you said that you don’t like GOODELL to make your point on saying you don’t trust brees to make it seem like drew is so bad. But I see right though you

  5. 2 straight off seasons of Brees and his yapper, yea I’m gonna trust Goodell here, Drew just seems like his hiding something all the time.

  6. “Are there facts and proof in evidence to back that up, besides just supposed, corroborated evidence between disgruntled employees? Has there been anything concrete that you can show that this indeed happened? To this point nobody’s seen anything.”

    Maybe Brees can try to explain how the “give me my money” video doesn’t constitute evidence. I don’t care who said give me my money, the fact of the matter is that someone on the saints D said give me my money immediately after finding out favre was knocked out of the game.

    Maybe Brees can explain why the accused players didn’t want to meet with Goodell to tell their side of the story. If I was accused of something that I didn’t do and something that could tarnish my reputation, one of the first things I would want to do is confront my accusers.

    My take on the players not wanting to meet Goodell and tell their side of the story is that the players don’t know what evidence Goodell has. As a result, the players dont want to get caught in a lie so they choose to say nothing.

  7. Your take is quite wrong. The NFL can’t even get their story straight on who said what in the video. Remember how Mary Jo White was so sure that it was Hargrove that she tried to convince the reporters she showed it to that he said it? She looked rather foolish when the NFL brass later admitted that “ok maybe it wasn’t him” Also Hargrove did try to meet with Goodell. Look where it got him. My take is that you’re not very bright.

  8. Brees is a fool and a liar. He still claims that there was no bounty even though eye witnesses and audio recordings say otherwise.

  9. Goodell is embarassed and prideful and is unwilling to admit he has made a mistake. He should be replaced as commissioner by someone everyone can trust.

  10. The evidence is plenty persuasive for me. Not just that the organization concocted a policy to injure opposing players, but also that Brees is a tool.

  11. Brees is a great guy..he loves his teammates, coaches, organization and especially the whodatnation fans…he is deeply involved in new orleans community…Brees is just a friendly outspoken and stand up type of guy…haters can hate but these same haters would luv for this guy to start on their team..too bad, cause Brees will be playing with a huge chip on his shoulder..not good for opposing defenses in 2012

  12. yojoemama says: Aug 5, 2012 10:48 PM

    Brees is a fool and a liar. He still claims that there was no bounty even though eye witnesses and audio recordings say otherwise.
    No, actually, you are wrong – eye witnesses and audio recordings did not say otherwise, and Brees has so testified under oath in federal court to that fact. What has Goodell done, other than hidden and misrepresented the evidence he collected?

  13. Who really cares about what happened as long as the New Orleans Saints come out winning games. This case is going to take care of itself this is why they have federal court to make sure everyone get a fair hearing. If I were a player in Vilma place know I wouldn’t trust the NFL commissioner ever because my career is on the line. Now its in the Federal court hands let them say who right and who wrong then everyone will be at peace these are millions dollars players they don’t have time playing games with Roger Goodell. I’m just happy all this mess don’t affect the players focus on this season games they looked great against the Cardinals Sunday night. This to me was more important seeing the players playing with motivation wanting to prove themselves as professional football players. People’s talking mess is not going to stop them from winning games.

  14. With the story that broke overnight…about Goodell offering Vilma a deal..reducing the Vilma’s “sentence” to half a year…

    Brees had good reason for being silent…the case is moving in favor of the players, especially Vilma.

  15. Calling Brees untrustworthy in my first post had nothing to do with Bountygate junk.

    “My No. 1 priority, and it always has been this, is keeping our team together and making sure we have the right guys in the right positions to make a run at this for a long time. ”

    If that was true, he would of had a contract signed before having the franchise tag put on him costing them at least their LG and who knows who else in the future.

  16. I don’t have a problem with the guy sticking up for his teammates.

    That said, when he completely blew off Faulk’s question about the commissioner having that power to begin with, I rolled my eyes. If you are going to make those accusations against the commissioner you’d sound a lot more credible if you admitted your team did their part by ratifying the CBA that allowed him to keep those powers without any fight. Or explaining why you didn’t challenge it even though supposedly it was a non-negotiable item. Or why once you did vote to ratify the CBA your teammates felt that the process they approved was a sham and not worthy of participating in.

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