There are very few things I would criticize about Roger Goodell’s tenure as the commissioner of the NFL. I think he’s done a very good job of trying to clean up player conduct off the field, as well as the safety of the game on it.
And despite what the New Orleans Saints say, he has handled the bounty situation well, too. Just because the Saints players are saying it wasn’t a “bounty” system it is quite clear there was a pay for performance program in place. The pay was for injuries and big hits, so all this whining by the Saints falls on deaf ears for me.
However, the biggest issue that Goodell still clearly doesn’t get it is with the number of football games actually played. Goodell had this to say to the San Francisco Chronicle yesterday, “The four preseason games are an issue for us. One, you have a question whether we really need it to put on the best quality product. Two, you have an issue of how our fans are reacting to it, and they’re not reacting positively. It’s not the kind of standard that the NFL is used to producing.”
I have no problem with that statement, I’m not sure anyone really like preseason games, players or fans. But these comments seem to lead back to the issue of lengthening the regular season to 18 games, of which I am not in favor.
Goodell has been consistent in saying the fans are asking for an 18 game regular season and that is just not true. Almost every poll ever taken has shown the fans are against lengthening the season to 18 games. Sure, some fans may want it but the majority of fans do not. I love the game but I think 16 games is a perfect number.
Plus, Goodell looks like a hypocrite asking for more games, yet claiming to care about the players safety and well being. That does not match his stance on an 18 game schedule. The more games there are, the more injuries are likely to occur.
I’m fine with cutting the preseason down to two games but not with the intent on having an 18 game regular season. Roger Goodell doesn’t feel the same way; the difference is, he usually gets his way.