If there was ever a time for NFL owners to start expressing their displeasure with Roger Goodell, it’s now, while the smoke from Judge Richard Berman’s torching of Goodell’s Ballghazi ruling is still swirling. And so here comes Falcons owner Arthur Blank, rather flatly stating that he’s sick of all these fuck ups.
Blank talked to the Atlanta Journal Constitution about Goodell, and did that thing bosses are so good at doing: smuggle a finger wag into what appears to be a compliment:
“It’s not healthy for the NFL to be in the kind of litigious position that it’s been for last several years,” Blank said. “I think that the commissioner is working hard to hold up the respect and integrity of the game, the competitive balance of the game and the shield. Having said that, I think we have to find ways to get to a better place sooner with the NFLPA than the process that we’ve gone through.”
Blank is absolutely right. It would be good for everyone if the NFL could come up with a more constructive process for working out disagreements with players than using federal lawsuits involving Tom Brady’s balls as grounds for proxy battles. He also understands that this isn’t about Ballghazi, but the validity of the CBA:
“This deflategate thing which isn’t about deflatedgate any longer, it’s about what has been collectively negotiated for decades in terms of the commissioner’s responsibility in terms of disciplining players,” Blank said. “If we have to look at that differently in today’s light, in today’s environment, as an ownership group we should be prepared to do that. The commissioner should be prepared to do that.”
That sure sounds like a guy who would like to put Roger Goodell back on a leash. I’d imagine that from an owner’s perspective, letting the commissioner do a Judge Dredd impression is all well and good so long as he’s doing so competently, but Goodell has repeatedly demonstrated his complete inability to successfully preside over his own kangaroo court. The fact that an NFL owner is suggesting the CBA maybe needs to be re-negotiated in a way that lessens the league’s power over players tells you all you need to know about what a shitty job Goodell has been doing.