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Is Goodell getting drunk with power?
That's the latest edict from first-year commissioner Roger Goodell. The new head honcho has drawn much praise for his get-tough policies, including a one-year suspension of Pacman Jones though the Titans cornerback has yet to be charged for his alleged role in a Las Vegas strip club shooting that left a man paralyzed.
Still, who knew Goodell had such a Puritan streak? Forget the No Fun League. The NFL is starting to look like the Nanny Figure League.
The NFL had already banned alcohol from the locker room, which is understandable. As the tragic drunk-driving death of Cardinals reliever Josh Hancock the night after a recent game makes clear -- though Hancock didn't imbibe in the clubhouse that night -- there is a high potential cost to a workplace routinely providing alcohol to its workers. (Though how do teams celebrate a Super Bowl victory now, by pouring Fresca over each other's heads?)
But on Thursday, Goodell informed teams that the alcohol ban was being extended to all team functions, including planes and buses. The prohibition even extends to all team personnel, as well as to "other guests traveling with the team or who have access to club facilities."
So are we really to believe that if Redskins owner Dan Snyder, for example, wants a glass of chardonnay while returning from a West Coast game on the team plane, he will be forbidden to do so? By that logic, why not make the owner's luxury suite dry during games?
Goodell's motivation is clear. The league has been given a black eye from the scores of player arrests the past few seasons, and many of those offenses have been alcohol-related. Goodell wants to be seen as addressing that issue decisively.
On the other hand, Goodell is dealing with players -- plus owners, coaches and executives -- who are adults of legal drinking age. At some point, they must be trusted to act responsibly on their own, with the understanding that like an employee of any other company, potential misdeeds will have consequences.
Plus they already tried Prohibition once, and it didn't work out so well.
posted by SI.com | View comments |
i love the idea of goodell cleaning up the length, but i definately think he is over stepping his bounds here
What is the big deal, so they can't get drunk while on company time, damn the MAN!
Here is a wake up call, next time you are at work and have to go to a meeting offsite, stop and grab a few beers on the way..yeah see how that goes over.
Trust the adults to act like adults and let them deal with the consequences when they don't. The stadiums are continuing to sell alcohol, and if the players and team personnel were flying commercially there would certainly be alcohol at their disposal.
They can't use Fresca - it might cause complications if someone is taking Statins. (Those are still allowed, aren't they?)
But I can see a a major revenue opportunity here. Pepsi could be the official sponsor of the post-game celebration. And the losing team could be sponsored by RC Cola.
Does this mean that the league and it's television affiliates will refuse advertising from Budweiser, Miller Lite et al.? Further, are current and ex-athletes banned from making commercials for these products? Finally, does this mean stadiums no longer can sell beer to fans(they wear Logo merchandise after all). If fans can't drink, what is the over-under on the next Arizona Cardinal game with measureable attendance-beyond family members and press.
maybe if he was really serious about the alcohol problem he would stop having beer companies as sponsors...oh wait, thats just crazy
First I thought it was a good move, but you know what players will continue to find ways to drink and get into trouble. That kept me wondering how would the media have reacted had the same laws were brought in by Bud Selig or David Stern, before the whole Josh Hancock/Tony LaRussa episodes. Don't think for a moment Selig or Stern would've gotten the red carpet from the media.
why dan snyder? get off of it.
I don't know all the facts, but how many of these 'black eye' incidents involved the player having alcohol from a team function?
Wait, I think there's a bigger plan here, one that involves NFL players running rum from their stills out behind the practice facility. Yes, that's it - - Roger Goodell has figured out how to increase diversity in NASCAR!
next thing you know, NFL players won't be able to get on boats with strippers anymore.
I don't see this as solving any issue. If it's done as a reaction to the death of Josh Hancock, then it is a knee-jerk reaction solving no problem. His death came after any team function, when he had too much to drink in one (or possibly more than one) establishment. It wasn't through a team-related function.
Our society has become way too prudent in the use of alcohol.
It's mostly the flights I'd object to. Yeah, no alcohol in team meetings, fine, I'm not allowed to have alcohol in the meetings I go to. But if all of a sudden my company was telling me that on the FLIGHT to a business trip, I wasn't allowed to have a drink, even if I paid for it??? Yeah, whatever...
Actually, I think that it is more of a function of the NFL trying to avoid liability than anything. If a player is allowed to drink on an NFL plan and then drives home and is in an accident, I would think there is a possibility of liability to the NFL. Didn't Hancock's dad try and sue the bar who provided him the drinks? I doubt this is the first type of lawsuit--and the NFL would be a pretty easy target with big pockets as a potential defendant!
It's about time.
The NFL has begun to look like an alternative to prison.
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