NFL Commissioner puts round peg in round hole: The Ezekiel Elliott No-Brainer edition

Rarely do I defend Commissioner Roger Goodell – he’s hardly the defendable one – but for one brief moment, can we cut this guy some slack?  For the first time in a long time, the Commish finally got something right.  The fact that he had no choice in the matter had little to do with it.  We’ll take progress any way we can get it #babysteps.

In their attempt to present sports journalism on a level with ESPN, a recent FS1 broadcast put up this super:

As you can see, the network (or at least this particular program) questioned Roger Goodell’s handling of the Ezekiel Elliott situation.  With football season weeks away, networks continue to find nothing better to talk about than Colin Kaepernick’s knee and Ezekiel Elliott’s fist.  The games can’t start soon enough.

Six games was the suspension levied on Ezekiel Elliott, who had been accused of beating his girlfriend.  The penalty came with little hesitation.  Zeke has had a recent history of dubious behavior (he’s only been in the league a year) but then again so has the NFL when it comes to penalizing its domestic violators.  Although charges were dropped, Zeke had been accused of just that: domestic violence.  Elliott got the hammer although one could most certainly argue that, if he was guilty, six games is hardly penalty enough.

Here’s the disturbing part.

Whether Elliott hit – or did not hit – his significant other is factually (just not morally) irrelevant.  The league had no choice but to suspend him; its history of bad decision-making forced its hand.  Innocent or not, Elliott became the scapegoat for a league that has failed to give a fuck for the longest.

Waffling on Ray Rice years ago, initially going with a two-game suspension while weed smokers and ball deflaters were getting four, will haunt Goodell for eternity.  In the wake of the news on Elliott, Goodell could no longer be seen as soft on domestic violence.  Hence, the lengthy suspension which Elliott is now appealing.

In light of (what the league considered) damning evidence, Elliott’s employer, Dallas Cowboys’ owner Jerry Jones has chosen his words wisely, waiting for all the facts to come out, understanding that supporting his player prematurely before any sort of elevator misconduct videos are released could jeopardize his standing as king shit among NFL owners.

The point is this and really needs not be discussed much further, even though the networks inevitably will.  If Elliott did was he was alleged to do, the six games is fitting, knowing that his next offense will be far worse than that.  If he’s innocent, he still must pay the piper for all the years the league treated domestic violence as a non-issue.

One must play the scapegoat and who better than a young, fresh face of the league.  If Elliott’s six game-suspension deters future incidents of domestic violence, then who cares whether Goodell got it right or wrong, or whether Elliott did it nor not?  His suspension will send notice to the rest of the league that the front office will no longer tolerate such behavior.

This is not the first time, nor will it be the last, that the NFL has acted as judge, jury and executioner to protect its own image.  This time, however, it might actually serve a purpose.

12 thoughts on “NFL Commissioner puts round peg in round hole: The Ezekiel Elliott No-Brainer edition

  1. There’s been a pattern of behavior concerning Ezekiel Elliot , but what the fans clearly don’t understand, was that under the CBA (collective bargaining agreement) with the union , Goodell has the right to punish the players as he sees fit, even when the punishment doesn’t necessarily fit the crime. The blame for this rests squarely with the idiots of the union(NFLPA), who sold their souls to the Devil in order for the money .

  2. This isn’t going away either, Al.

    Just like the NFL refused to let Tom Brady off the hook, Ezekiel Elliott is now appealing their decision and once again forcing the league’s hand.

    I can’t imagine the league would make a decision on Zeke without having all the facts in hand but for some reason, Zeke still thinks he’s innocent.

    Unfortunately, we get to see how this all unfolds right before our very eyes.

  3. Find a good gold digger and give her anything she wants (he can afford it) along with a fair prenup and get on with making millions OR call the cops yourself when things escalate to have her removed. What an idiot!

  4. Goodell has been inconsistent with the level of punishment meted out to players . Personally , I feel the NFL has become a complete farce , lacking leadership , never mind the fact there’s a great deal of frigging hypocrisy among the players themselves.

    So Jeter and Jordan (MJ) are now co-owners of the Marlins ? Why do I now get the feeling the Rays will now become even more irrelevant ?

  5. 1) This was really a “lifetime achievement award for a lot of non-sense which has surrounded the Cowboys for quite a while. Kommissar Goodell didn’t really want to screw with the goose which lays the golden eggs (let’s be honest, Jerry Jones in in the Hall of Fame because he made a lot of people a lot of money), but the NFL is super-sensitive to public perception, so this was really inevitable.

    2) Just wait for 2021 when the current CBA expires. Get ready right now for a labor dispute which wipes out a major part of the season, if not all of it.

  6. Dubs…

    Among the million pieces I have in the works is a comparison between the NFL and NBA PAs.

    Despite its popularity, I still hold the NFL is on shaky ground. The last thing it needs is a strike.

    These players though have to be looking at what the NBA guys are making and shaking their heads.

  7. “If Elliott’s six game-suspension deters future incidents of domestic violence, then who cares whether Goodell got it right or wrong, or whether Elliott did it nor not?”

    I would think Elliott cares quite a bit…As do the Cowboys.
    As should the league.

    While I agree a deterrent for such things is good, it shouldn’t come at the expense of someone innocent of the charges. I don’t know if he’s guilty or innocent, but either way the truth is the truth is the truth and these things should be treated with the utmost regard for the truth.

    That’s a pretty serious charge and I for one would want it gotten right if I were in his shoes. False charges can ruin peoples lives…A few Duke lacross players can vouch for how false charges can affect one’s life.

  8. The truth is the truth, Bleed. Spoken like a true idealist. I didn’t know you still had it in ya’.

    A far more embittered reader (cough… J-Dub) would ask in his best Tina Turner voice, what’s truth got to do with it.

    I think we can all agree that Zeke needs to stop either a) doing it or b) putting himself in these situations.

    Try dating a less crazy girl for starters.

    Let’s hope, since he’s appealing, that he knows what the hell he’s talking about. Then we’ll see just how bad the NFL looks with even more egg on its already fat face.

  9. Good for Elliott with the TRO. He may have a rumored track record but the precedent of setting punishment as a deterrent alone for other future players when a man’s reputation and livelihood are in question is pretty abhorrent. Some of us have been talking for several weeks about the willful dismissal of evidence by the NFL in their decision of the ONLY person toi interview the accuser. Crazy.

  10. Looks like Zeke proved the NFL is out of order here Don.

    Now the guy’s gonna play the whole season?

    I don’t know what’s worse, the fact that he, the court system and the NFLPA made the league look bad…. or that they did it to themselves.

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