On Monday, Roger Goodell went on the air for a "SiriusXM Town Hall" event with Michael Strahan in New York. The only news to come out of the radio spot was Goodell's threat to kill the Pro Bowl if players didn't start trying harder.
But that was before we saw this photo. A Saints fan, who posts as "2009ring" on SaintsReport.com, uploaded this wonderful pic of him and the commissioner. How'd it happen? 2009ring was chosen to be one of the participants in the town hall, and asked Goodell on-air about the league's bounty evidence. (He also received a Goodell-signed football!) As for the shirt,
During the event, I wore my white Deuce 26 jersey. Underneath I had a black "FREE SEAN PAYTON" T shirt on. I didn't want to risk any reactions to the shirt before or during the broadcast (there was NFL security EVERYWHERE). So, after the broadcast, I removed the jersey and put it in my bag. They gave us each footballs that Goodell signed for us. I held my football over the FSP part of the shirt until I got right next to Goodell. We made chit chat for a minute then posed for the picture. At that time I lowered the football to my waist to fully expose the FREE SEAN PAYTON message on the shirt.
2009ring also shared his impression of Goodell, who seems like he was a good sport about the shirt thing,
This man is a pure PR machine. He exudes a personality that makes you want to like him. Frankly, if I didn't know what I know about him, I probably would have fallen for it. But it's easy to see why the media fawns all over him. The fact that he presents himself the way he does is either maniacal genius or borderline sociopath.
Meanwhile, if the four Saints players successfully appeal their punishments, Tom Benson would consider agitating for a reduction in Payton's one-year suspension as well.