So, this is all fairly simple now. Thanks to an AP report that contradicted every shitty, lawyered-up statement that he made on national TV this week, Roger Goodell is a proven liar. No one in the NFL saw the Ray Rice elevator tape? LIE. Couldn't legally obtain the tape? LIE. Didn't know what was on the tape? LIE LIE LIE BIG FUCKING LIE. He's a liar, but also so much more! He's an autocrat, a bully, an enabler, a stooge, an egomaniac, and a corrupt loon. And he needs to be fired.
I say all this while remaining fully aware that NFL owners are now clearly determined to keep Goodell around and shove out some poor underling to take the blame. They'll still make a mint in the process. But they would also make the same amount of money if they fired Goodell and hired this iron.
That's one strong iron. Ever negotiate with an iron? The iron isn't fucking around. Literally ANYONE can helm the NFL at this point and not fuck up because professional football is so popular, regardless of how unpopular its leadership may be. So why would you keep a proven liar and shitbag in charge? New Bills owner Terry Pegula is gonna need a new stadium. Does he really want to trot out Roger fucking Goodell to help close that deal? Politicians are the scum of the earth, but they know when a guy is radioactive. What London collective is gonna want to bring the NFL abroad with the Ginger Hammer as its champion? Fuck that. No way. And who wants this asshole hugging them at the draft? Get the fuck away from me, Roger.
Goodell's credibility is shot, particularly with women. And while the NFL is a male-driven business to the extreme, sometimes the ol' boys network has to deal with pesky network and sponsor execs and civil servants, many of whom happen to be women. Goodell used to be able to use the league's mass popularity to run those people over and get whatever the league wanted. The NFL got paid for the privilege of pushing everyone around. No more. That's done. There's no good reason to keep him around now, except out of pure self-righteousness, which is about the only thing the NFL excels at these days. One owner told Peter King that Goodell has been great for the game of football. Oh, really? Under his leadership, people have begun to openly question if football should even fucking exist. How is that good again? Listen to this delusional idiot:
People expect a lot from the NFL. We accept that. We embrace that. That's our opportunity to make a difference not just in the NFL, but in society in general. We have that ability. We have that influence.
I mean, that's nuts. You run a fucking football league. Not a nation. This commissioner is deluded and determined to overextend himself, and to what end?
Look, he may stick around. All the NFL stooges, all the Very Serious People who were so upset yesterday because Daddy came up drunk and pissed himself in the living room, are happy now because Uncle Bob is coming in to make everything OK. Robert Mueller may be a crypto-fascist and an incompetent—just ask Stephen Hatfill, the suspect in the 2001 anthrax mailings whom Mueller didn't bother to clear for two years after the FBI had already deemed him innocent—but all the right people are going to line up and talk up his good intentions and credibility until they're settled fact. There's pretty much nothing a sufficiently powerful person can do to get right-thinking people to treat him with the contempt he deserves, which is exactly what Goodell is going to benefit from. Read Peter King's column today. You can see exactly how the NFL is going to unfuck the pooch. The next volley of stories will be about the brave appointment of a serious-minded "independent" investigator, leading inexorably to next week's conventional wisdom that Goodell's fuck-up here was an aberration in an otherwise distinguished career marked only by square-jawed statecraft.
But fuck that. Things can change. One—one—reporter can explain exactly how the fuck it is that league sources told him or her what was on that tape months ago, or one owner's wife can be like, "How can you keep that asshole around?" and suddenly phone calls are made. The dam breaks, just as it did yesterday afternoon when the AP took a shit in Roger Goodell's mouth. He is a millstone around the NFL's neck—a DISTRACTION, even—and the sooner he's gone, the better. Fire that asshole.