With COVID-19 cases rising across the country, there has been talk of the NFL playoffs potentially being held at one or more bubble locations. As of now, commissioner Roger Goodell says that is not part of the plan.
Goodell told reporters on Wednesday that it’s possible the NFL could have teams limit the number of people who come into contact with players, but the league is not planning to implement a bubble plan like the one we saw with the NBA. Goodell said the NFL is “considering a number of alternatives,” but officials feel strongly about the protocols that are currently in place.
“We don’t see the bubble as most refer to it in one location. We feel strongly our protocols are working,” Goodell said, via ESPN’s Adam Schefter. “We’re willing to adjust and adapt those protocols, take additional steps. But I don’t see us doing the bubble in the sense that the media focuses on it.”
The Baltimore Ravens have been dealing with a coronavirus outbreak that led to their game against the Pittsburgh Steelers being postponed to Wednesday afternoon. Many have criticized the NFL for not canceling the game or moving it to later in the season. Goodell said Wednesday that health and safety remains the top priority for the league and there is confidence the spread with the Ravens has been contained.
“We postponed the game to ensure we had confidence that the virus was contained. Our medical experts believe they have sufficiently traced the virus, identified high-risk personnel and that we can now safely proceed with the game today,” Goodell explained, according to ESPN’s Jamison Hensley.
The NFL formulated a plan for dealing with COVID-19 prior to the season and has stuck to it, despite seemingly endless criticism. Some were bothered that the Ravens-Steelers game was postponed while the Denver Broncos were forced to play without a quarterback on Sunday, but the reasoning behind that makes sense.
Unless something drastic changes in the coming weeks, the NFL is unlikely to implement any type of centralized bubble down the stretch.
A fan wearing a T-shirt depicting Roger Goodell as a clown was ejected from Arrowhead Stadium on Monday night, but the Kansas City Chiefs say the fan’s apparel had nothing to do with the decision.
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy shared a video during Monday’s game that showed a fan wearing the Goodell clown shirt being escorted out of the stadium.
Barstool, of course, created the shirt. Portnoy, a lifelong New England Patriots fan, has long despised Goodell for the way Deflategate was handled. The Goodell clown shirt has gained popularity in recent years and was even worn by a Patriots coach at one point.
TMZ reached out to the Chiefs to ask about the fan being ejected, and the team insists the Goodell shirt was not the violation committed by the fan.
“I can confirm, the ejection had nothing to do with the shirt the fan was wearing,” a Chiefs representative said.
Goodell was reportedly annoyed with the clown shirt, but we tend to doubt he or any NFL team would outlaw it at games. Although, the commissioner does hate Portnoy so much that he has banned him from games and would not accept a massive charitable donation from him. You never know.
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The NFL has drastically changed its stance on social justice protests from years past, but neither Colin Kaepernick nor Eric Reid respect what the league is doing.
On Sunday, Kaepernick tweeted that the NFL is pumping out “propoganda” while Reid, his former teammate, is being blackballed by teams. Reid is 28 and remains a free agent, but Kaepernick feels he is one of the best defensive backs in the league.
Reid returned the favor on Monday. The former San Francisco 49ers and Carolina Panthers safety took to Twitter to rip the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell. He said the social justice support that was seen on Sunday was “half-hearted at best.” He also criticized Goodell for never reaching out to Kaepernick to apologize.
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has been openly opposed to kneeling during the national anthem in the past. However, we even saw a Cowboys player kneel on Sunday.
The NFL has clearly changed its tune from a few years ago, but Kaepernick and Reid don’t feel it is nearly enough. It’s unclear what exactly that are looking for the league to do.
There was a significant external push for Washington to drop the Redskins nickname, but it appears there was an internal push for it as well.
According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell pushed Washington owner Dan Snyder “very hard” to change the name. Goodell had been more subtle in previous efforts to get Snyder to drop the name, but decided to go “full force” in light of the current discussion about racism in America.
To be clear, Goodell may have played a part, but external pressure may have been an even bigger factor. Multiple retailers stopped carrying the team’s merchandise, and FedEx, who own the stadium naming rights, also publicly urged the team to drop the nickname. Between the public and private pressure, Snyder was ultimately left with little choice.
We’re still waiting to find out what the new nickname will be, reportedly because there are issues securing the trademark.
The NFL’s social media reportedly went behind the league’s back to create a video featuring multiple players, which ultimately led to a response from Roger Goodell on Friday.
On Thursday, a video featuring several NFL players circulated online. The video featured players like Michael Thomas, Tyrann Mathieu, Patrick Mahomes, Saquon Barkley, Odell Beckham Jr., Deshaun Watson and DeAndre Hopkins.
The Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue says the NFL’s content creators went behind the league’s back to work with players dissatisfied with the NFL’s original statement, to create the video and circulate it.
Goodell then shared a video on Friday in which he said the league was “wrong” not to listen to protesting players sooner. He mentioned social injustice, racism, and said “black lives matter” during the video.
Here is what the league wrote in a tweet shared via its social media account on Thursday:
Roger Goodell and the NFL have had a major about face on their stance regarding player protests.
In a new video released Friday afternoon, Goodell made a major admission, saying that the NFL was “wrong” in its handling of player protests. In the video, Goodell openly encourages players to peacefully protest, and says he will reach out to individual players who have spoken out to discuss how the NFL can do better going forward.
Things have changed significantly in four years. When Colin Kaepernick initially started kneeling during the national anthem, the act was hugely controversial and the league essentially tried to create a series of rules to ensure that it couldn’t happen going forward. Now, Goodell is essentially admitting that the NFL bungled the whole thing, and should have spent more time listening to the message that Kaepernick and his fellow protesters were trying to send.
Only time will tell how the NFL moves forward from here, as actions speak louder than words. This is still a watershed statement from Goodell that signifies a major change in how the league intends to handle any further player protests. It’s a stance that some are certain to be unhappy with, but some players will likely appreciate as an important starting point.
To the surprise of no one, the NFL won’t let Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy hang out with Roger Goodell in the commissioner’s mancave.
Portnoy, a notorious Goodell critic, won a $250,000 charity auction during the NFL Draft to watch a “Monday Night Football” game with Goodell in the commissioner’s basement mancave. The league won’t let that happen, however, saying Portnoy failed a necessary background check.
“He was the highest bidder, but the bid was contingent upon a background check,” NFL vice president of communications Brian McCarthy told Ben Fischer of Sports Business Daily. “So he consented to the background check, and it came back and he heard from the NFL today that he did not pass the background check. He will not be the winner.”
Among the reasons cited for Portnoy failing the background check: a pair of arrests for trespassing at NFL headquarters in 2015 and 2016, as well as falsifying credentials and ignoring a league ban during Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta. It also mentioned a 2011 incident in which Portnoy posted a nude photo of Tom Brady’s then 2-year-old son.
The league said that it will donate the $250,000 to charity, as it intended to do during the draft-a-thon. Instead of Portnoy, the league will select a “deserving front line worker” to meet Goodell and watch a game with him.
Ultimately, given Portnoy’s record and motives, it won’t be a surprise that the NFL won’t be allowing this to happen. Portnoy even expected that, and no one else should be surprised either.
Several states have given professional sports teams the green light to re-open their training facilities, and the NFL is hoping to have coaches return to work in the very near future.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said Thursday that he is optimistic coaches can resume working at team facilities as early as next week. In the meantime, the league has extended its virtual offseason program another two weeks.
The goal all along has been for the NFL to begin its season on time and not have to eliminate games. There’s no way of knowing what will happen with the pandemic between now and September, but as of now the league remains determined to proceed with its offseason as scheduled. Minicamps could begin for teams by the end of next month, which would keep them on track for training camp in July.
Goodell was heavily criticized for not postponing the NFL Draft last month, but the virtual event was a massive success. As long as teams can get the appropriate clearance from their local governments, the NFL is going to keep rolling forward.
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy took his love for trolling Roger Goodell to new heights this week, but he does not believe he will actually get the opportunity to spend some quality one-on-one time with the NFL commissioner.
The NFL recently auctioned off a chance to watch a “Monday Night Football” game with Goodell in his fan cave, and Portnoy submitted the winning bid at $250,000. So will the meeting actually happen? Portnoy told WFAN’s Boomer & Gio this week that he would be stunned if Goodell goes through with it.
“I’d be very surprised if they honor the agreement,” Portnoy said. “Crazier things have happened, but nothing would be more surprising to me than him honoring his agreement. He’s not a man of his word. He’s told a million lies. He’s never given the opportunity to a reporter to ask him the difficult questions. He surrounds himself with softball questions.”
Portnoy and three of his cohorts once got arrested at the NFL headquarters for protesting the league’s handling of Deflategate. Tom Brady gave the crew a shout-out on Twitter this week in honor of the five-year anniversary of the arrests. Portnoy has also been banned by the NFL and was even handcuffed and kicked out of the Super Bowl a year ago.
Barstool Sports has sold a T-shirt with Goodell’s face on it looking like a clown, and a former member of the New England Patriots’ coaching staff wore it at one point.
It remains to be seen if Goodell will try to bury the hatchet with Portnoy, who is a lifelong Boston sports fan and recently sold his company to Penn National Gaming for $450 million. If Goodell does decide to go through with it, it would be a great way for him to save face with many NFL fans.
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy is a genius when it comes to generating publicity, and he is at it again.
Portnoy spent $250,000 to win an NFL charity auction all so he could troll Roger Goodell.
The auction was for “Monday Night Football with the Commissioner in his Fan Cave + 2 tickets to any regular season game.” Yes, that means that Portnoy will be watching a game with the commissioner, a man he has trolled over the years.
Portnoy’s company has sold a T-shirt with Goodell’s face looking like a clown and made it so popular that even a New England Patriots coach wore it. Fans also had towels with Goodell’s clown face on it:
In a video announcing he had won the auction, Portnoy was wearing a hat that said “Fire Goodell” on it and a clown Goodell shirt.
Portnoy and three of his cohorts once got arrested at the NFL headquarters for protesting the league’s handling of Deflategate. Portnoy has been banned by the NFL and was even handcuffed and kicked out of the Super Bowl a year ago. And now he’s won a charity auction for the right to troll Goodell in person and create content for his company.
And if you’re wondering how Portnoy has the money for a stunt like this, his company sold to Penn National Gaming for $450 million earlier this year.