NFL needs independent investigation of NFL Network

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Given the latest allegations of workplace misconduct from a former NFL Network employee, it’s now clear that the NFL’s in-house broadcast operation has a significant problem. And it’s critical for the NFL to get to the bottom of it.

Like the league has done in multiple past situations (the Dolphins’ bullying scandal, the Ray Rice video controversy, #DeflateGate, and most recently the Jerry Richardson issue in Carolina), the NFL needs to hire an outside (ideally, truly independent) law firm to investigate the network, top to bottom and inside-out in order to determine all instances of actual or potential sexual harassment over the past 5-10 years, to hold appropriate persons accountable, and to ensure that these situations don’t happen again.

Don’t count on that happening, however. The other instances involving investigations conducted by outside (but not necessarily independent) law firms presented a far lower risk of civil liability. As to NFL Network, the first lawsuit already has been filed. Who knows how many more will follow?

While an independent investigation would serve an important purpose moving forward, it would also create evidence that could be used against the league in litigation filed by Jami Cantor, and by anyone else who may decide to pursue their rights in court.

As a result, the NFL has a dilemma. Fixing the problem could generate a trail of proof that would establish or exacerbate financial responsibility to current or former employees. Circling the wagons to defend against Jami Cantor’s case, and to brace for others, could make it more difficult to truly determine the full extent of the problem.

For a P.R. perspective, the right play would to investigate now. From a legal perspective, the smart move would  be to defend the case(s) now and fix the problem later. In the end, someone making upwards of $40 million per year will have to make the best decision on how to proceed, balancing the concept of protecting Big Shield with the importance of guarding its deep pockets.

50 responses to “NFL needs independent investigation of NFL Network

  1. This is getting crazy. Im not agreeing, or disagreeing, with the commentary….Im just saying that this used to be a simple GAME that I loved to watch, and its not that anymore.

  2. LOL.. NFL Independent investigation. There’s a 3 word Oxymoron for you. The NFL is Batting 1000 when it comes to getting the results from these investigations that they want to get.

  3. Well, we’ll always have Rich Eisen.

    And if none of us ever have to listen to Michael Irvin slobber all over the Cowboys every week then i guess at least something good came out of something bad.

  4. “…balancing the concept of protecting Big Shield with the importance of guarding its deep pockets”

    That’s no balancing needed. The league office’s conception of protecting The Shield has always been guarding it’s overflowing coffers. The fact that in the process they are slowly killing the goose that lays the golden eggs via the death of a thousand cuts is completely lost on them.

  5. I read the reports and according to the accusers, their first complaints were due to hugs that were too long. Some of the other stuff got bad after, but an uncomfortable hug is now sexual harassment? Sounds sketchy.

  6. this used to be a simple GAME that I loved to watch, and its not that anymore

    The past was seldom better than the present, but I miss the 80’s/early 90’s NFL experience more and more. The age of instant information has ruined the magic of the game.

  7. This is Roger’s World. There will be no attempt to fix a problem, or even to try to find the truth. There will only be lying and manipulation intended to sway public opinion. Speaking of public opinion, does anyone really care any more? The NFL owners have their Roger, and the rest of us have other sports to get busy watching.

  8. Maybe they’ll finally get to the bottom of why Jami Cantor used the men’s restroom as her office.

  9. It’s sheriff Goodell’s fault. Bet that someone wanted to tell him something was going on, but someone else prevented that person from telling Roger. He was made aware, but never followed through. Sounds familiar…kind of like th Zeke case.

  10. They will conduct a private investigation and then provide workplace conduct training (which has nothing to do with admission of guilt). Going forward the workplace will be on high alert for misconduct. It will be strictly to protect themselves from litigation.

  11. Nobody really cares about that NFL network. But fans care about the officiating that is being done in the NFL. Look into that Roger. Fix that will you?

  12. Independent investigation and the NFL with Goodell, do NOT belong in the same sentence….. I am SO happy the clueless owners (sans Jerry Jones) were on board with his contract extension (sarcasm) He is way in over his head, when it comes to true leadership 🙁

  13. No one would trust an ‘independent’ investigation run by the NFL under Goodell’s leadership.

    EVERYONE knows Goodell lied and FRAMED Brady and he wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.

  14. Normally I’m against these sort of witch hunts but by all reports things were out of control at NFL Network. Not to mention their general hiring practices to keep operating costs absolute minimal

  15. fmc651 says:
    December 22, 2017 at 3:38 am
    Nobody really cares about that NFL network. But fans care about the officiating that is being done in the NFL. Look into that Roger. Fix that will you?

    The officiating is now as it has ever been. The only difference, HD, super slo mo, multiple angles. The video game generation doesn’t get that you can’t just hit restart when you lose. They’re used to “cheat codes” and probably haven’t ever won a video game without them. They assume anyone who beats them or their team must be cheating.

  16. Remember the board room scene in Margin Call? Peter Sullivan = Mark Cuban.

    The concern was the music slowing down and killing the goose that laid the golden egg. Right now, for the NFL, the music is STOPPING.

  17. Actually, the smart thing for the NFL to do would be to settle with Cantor to save money in lawyers’ fees and have the bad PR go away. It’s not the right thing to do from a moral standpoint, but from a business standpoint, it’s the right thing to do.

  18. redclaw1314 says:
    December 21, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    Ted Wells was independent—Roger said so.
    —————————

    Yep. Oh, you want to see the psigate interview notes? Sorry, that is privileged information.

  19. Someday, in business classes around the world, Roger Goodell’s reign as NFL Commissioner will be used as an example of how not to conduct business, and how in 10 short years, a multi-billion dollar corporation was laid waste by greed, fraud, lies, and gross incompetence.

    The NFL will be placed ahead of Enron and WorldCom in the pantheon of business disasters.

  20. These are accusations from, if I remember correctly, two employees? Former employees, rather?

    Maybe there’s bad culture, maybe not, but unlike most people these days I would rather be patient with my outrage when I do not know all of the facts. And I think that the NFL (or NFL Network) has plenty of reason to hide bad behavior, I also think Cantor’s broad range of accusations is kind of suspicious.

  21. People thumbs downed the comment, but I agree with the question….why did the alleger use a men’s restroom as her office? I am all for rooting out sexual harassment everywhere, including the White House, and holding people accountable for their sins, including the current occupant of the White House, but I learned something throughout my life called being accountable for one’s actions. Several unrelated things may have occurred that deserve that accountable but I am holding Jami Cantor accountable for hanging out in men’s restrooms. Unlike “she wore the wrong thing” and stupidity like that, she is inviting bad behavior to some degree by working in an inappropriate location where people of the opposite sex partially disrobe to take care of business. That is still weird to me.

  22. Frankly, I’d be happy if the NFL network cancelled all LIVE programming. Stick to “Football Life” and documentaries and replays of old games. The constant blather is useless and annoying. I quit watching the live programming last year. If I never have to listen to Deion Sanders and his self-serving bulls*%t again, I’ll be a happy man.

  23. If a man worked in a women’s restroom, what do you think the chances are of him winning a sexual harassment lawsuit? Every decent person wants to root out evil actions from either sex, but if you push too far in one direction, there is a backlash. You don’t have to be a history major to understand that. Hold the criminals accountable for their actions, but be careful about painting with too broad a brush. Now everyone (women included) that is going to be interviewing a woman for a job is going to look at her as a potential lawsuit waiting to happen. This is going to end up hurting women.

  24. gorilladunk says:
    December 22, 2017 at 9:01 am

    Frankly, I’d be happy if the NFL network cancelled all LIVE programming. Stick to “Football Life” and documentaries and replays of old games. The constant blather is useless and annoying. I quit watching the live programming last year. If I never have to listen to Deion Sanders and his self-serving bulls*%t again, I’ll be a happy man.
    ***********************************************************************************
    No kidding…couldn’t agree more…pre-game hype, post game blather and news conferences with nothing but softball questions and “non-answers”…it’s all bulls*&#. Just televise the game and call it a day.

  25. mmack66 says:

    December 22, 2017 at 8:13 am

    Someday, in business classes around the world, Roger Goodell’s reign as NFL Commissioner will be used as an example of how not to conduct business, and how in 10 short years, a multi-billion dollar corporation was laid waste by greed, fraud, lies, and gross incompetence.

    The NFL will be placed ahead of Enron and WorldCom in the pantheon of business disasters.
    ************************************
    Wishful thinking. In business classes at Harvard, Yale, and Stanford, where the students will someday actually be running billion dollar corporations, they’ll use Goodell as an example of how to get a huge return on your investment. Winning a popularity contest, where only “have-nots” are doing the voting, is not a priority with future billionaires.

  26. They should hire Kenneth Starr to investigate this. He proved that Bill Clinton (and his wife Hillary, too) was a bold faced liar during the Whitewater and Monica Lewinsky investigations and he could do the same investigating the NFL Network and the NFL owners.

  27. TheWizard says:
    December 21, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    this used to be a simple GAME that I loved to watch, and its not that anymore

    The past was seldom better than the present, but I miss the 80’s/early 90’s NFL experience more and more.
    —————————————————————————————————————————-
    I think your memory is faulty. Back then the 49ers were the Patriots, Montana was the “system QB”, they were merely a “finesse” team and all that.

    I.e. it wasn’t any different.

  28. The problem is that they have struggled to maintain control over independent investigations and its important they do. Otherwise they get into those situations where the investigation didn’t get the result they were looking for. They can deal with it by saying the result is “being taken under advisement” then ignoring it completely, or editing the result before releasing it, but every time they do that less than half the public is fooled and thats a bad look. So an ounce of prevention vs pound of cure…..better to just keep the investigation in house and under control in the first place.

  29. charliecharger says:
    December 22, 2017 at 10:43 am

    Wishful thinking. In business classes at Harvard, Yale, and Stanford, where the students will someday actually be running billion dollar corporations, they’ll use Goodell as an example of how to get a huge return on your investment.
    ———————

    What return on what investment? Why do you people keep insisting that Goodell is in any way responsible for the growth of the NFL? He couldn’t negotiate the last CBA, and he got told to GTFO at the last television contract renewal.

  30. walker1191 says:
    December 22, 2017 at 10:49 am

    I think your memory is faulty. Back then the 49ers were the Patriots, Montana was the “system QB”, they were merely a “finesse” team and all that.

    I.e. it wasn’t any different.
    ————————–

    Oh, it was different, because Goodell wasn’t the commissioner. And they didn’t have Thursday Night Football, except on Thanksgiving.

  31. the NFL needs to hire an outside (ideally, truly independent) law firm to investigate the network, top to bottom and inside-out in order to determine all instances of actual or potential sexual harassment over the past 5-10 years, to hold appropriate persons accountable, and to ensure that these situations don’t happen again.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    I disagree. They need to reiterate their policies and hold accountable those that violate them. Investigating a work environment 5-10 years back is pointless. Many involved are gone, some policies/laws may have been different and there is no benefit to the company. They should focus on active complaints internally. The only need for outside agency involvement is when actual CRIMINAL violations occur…and then it should be the proper authorities, not some hack lawyer group looking for billable hours and whatever result is desired.

  32. For those of you raising the question of Jami “working” in the men’s restroom – she had a real office. When she worked in the men’s restroom, she was getting clothes ready (steaming most probably) for the on air shows. This should not be that hard to comprehend!

  33. and they don’t need evidence ether.and they already have a sentence,and will make a statement,saying everyone is guilty,as if giving a verdict in a court of law,because the NFL only needs a a thought, by someone with or without a motive.am not saying misconduct took place or did not take place.am say ing,that if the NFL wants to make a statement, evidence or the lack thereof, is non issue,they will fill in the blanks as they go a long,no matter how much time it takes to drop the hammer on an employee,and if a federal court of appeals,looks at their process of investigation analysis,and punishment and hiding recommendation from their top investigator of no punishment ,due to no evidence and non credible witness and accuser,and overturning/put a hold of, their punishment handed out,stating that the NFL’s report and process is an insult to the court, and basics of justice v violation of the accused’s basic human rights & general mockery of the constitution and the justice system..example ,,how the commish,did ZEKE ELLIOT…HE SAID,ALL THE EVIDENCE THE NFL NEEDS IS,PERCEPTION,ACUSATIONTRUE OR FALSE,DOSN’T MATTER

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