Roger Goodell on termination of Jim Trotter: “I wasn’t part of that decision”

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On Monday morning, Jim Trotter of NFL Media announced that his contract with the league-owned operation would not be renewed.

On Tuesday afternoon, Trotter suggested that his repeated questions to Commissioner Roger Goodell about diversity, equity, and inclusion in the NFL Media newsroom played a role in the decision.

On Tuesday evening, Goodell rejected that premise.

“I wasn’t part of that decision and actually was just made aware of it about 10 minutes before I walked in here,” Goodell told reporters at the league meetings in Arizona. “So, no, I don’t believe that had anything to do with it.”

Not being involved in the decision doesn’t conclusively prove the absence of a connection. Sometimes, the Code Red happens without a Code Red being ordered.

“Who will rid me of this meddlesome priest?,” as Myles Simmons likes to say every once in a while (or more often than that), is all it takes.

Or maybe someone in NFL Media management decided on his or her own to flag Trotter for termination after witnessing Trotter ask pointed questions of Goodell in two straight pre-Super Bowl press conferences, most recently adding this eyebrow-raising quote from James Baldwin when confronting Goodell on the subject: “I can’t believe what you say because I see what you do.”

No, Goodell wouldn’t need to tell anyone to fire Trotter. A simple, seemingly casual, expression of displeasure by Goodell to someone in NFL Media management (e.g., “I’m surprised you don’t have better control of your people”) would send a message, loudly and clearly.

I’m not saying that’s what happened. No one will know what happened, absent litigation. Which could indeed be coming.

19 responses to “Roger Goodell on termination of Jim Trotter: “I wasn’t part of that decision”

  1. I wish the rug could be pulled right from under Goodell’s feet while he’s publicly giving some BS answer.

  2. Did Goodell directly or indirectly have a hand in this? I don’t know. But I do know publicly calling out your CEO multiple times in a public forum has served as a career ending move for many people.

    There are ways to advocate for change internally that don’t involve attempts to publicly embarrass.

  3. Wouldn’t be the first or last reporter moved along due to asking tough questions.

  4. I watch NFL Network quite frequently. If no announcement was made regarding Jim Trotter, and he just stopped his infrequent appearances, it’s doubtful I would have noticed his absence. He certainly wasn’t a regular contributor.

  5. How about the guy was simply let go because he was an under performing employee. How about that? Sometimes it has nothing to do with anything but that…Period

  6. It is obvious what the league is doing in terminating Trotter. It is playing to the same crowd that freaked out about the players demanding equal rights for everyone.

  7. Ahahaha. A lawsuit for not renewing a contract.

    So when a player is a free agent and their contract expires, they can sue the team that let them walk? Is that what Florio is saying?

    I have a close friend who is an employer litigator. She laughed outloud at the suggestion Trotter could sue.

  8. Trotter was never that good of a reporter anyway. When he worked in San Diego, he was the foremost proponent of using “anonymous sources.” This is most likely why BSPN hired him away from the SD paper. It is their MO.

  9. Why was his contract not renewed? The reasons may not be public knowledge, but to assume it’s due to two separate interviews with the Commissioner is pure speculation.

  10. How is not renewing someone’s contract a potential legal mess. The contract states a specific time that the person will be employed. It has been fulfilled. Both parties could decide to go their own way at that point and the NFL did. What am I missing?

  11. “Who is that irritating person? Is he one of ours? Have someone take care of it. I don’t need to know the details. Thank you.”

  12. What grounds does he have to sue for having his contract not renewed? Is the NFL obligated to offer someone a new contract once the current one expires?

  13. What grounds does Trotter have to sue for not having his contract renewed? Is the NFL required by law to offer someone a new contract once the current one expires? This seems like a basic question that hasn’t been addressed in multiple articles on the subject.

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