Richard Sherman calls out Roger Goodell, Robert Kraft for their relationship
The Seattle Seahawks have said very little about Deflategate over the past week, but Richard Sherman proved on Sunday that biting your tongue for that long is a lot harder than it seems.
When a reporter asked Sherman if he believes the Patriots will be disciplined for allegedly deflating footballs before the AFC Championship Game, the All-Pro cornerback was quick to point out that Patriots owner Robert Kraft and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell are good buddies.
“Will they be punished? Probably not,” Sherman said, per Ellio Shor-Parks of NJ.com. “Not as long as Robert Kraft and Goodell are taking pictures at their respective homes. I think he was just at Kraft’s house last week for the AFC Championship. Talk about conflict of interest.”
Sherman is right. The Patriots shared some photos on Twitter from their AFC Championship party last week, and Goodell was there hanging out with New England’s boss.
Scenes from the AFC Championship party & special live edition of Patriots All Access at Robert Kraft's house tonight pic.twitter.com/SAFn5WzHWy
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) January 18, 2015
Sherman is also right about that being a conflict of interest. Goodell and Kraft are clearly friends. As Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post notes, a recent GQ Magazine feature cites an unnamed NFL executive who claims Kraft is referred to around the league as the “assistant commissioner” because of his close relationship with Goodell.
But regardless of the personal relationship Kraft and Goodell have, it will be difficult for the NFL to discipline the Patriots without evidence. If you listened to Bill Belichick speak to the media on Saturday, you know the Pats head coach seems confident the NFL has nothing on him. Not only that, but the heat is being turned up on the NFL as more people start to suspect that the league ran a sting operation during the AFC Championship.
If Goodell’s friendship with Kraft was a major factor, he could have easily cleared the Patriots by now and let everyone move on.