Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Reusse on the suspensions

Pat Reusse gives the NFLPA hell for ceding disciplinary decisions to the league in the collective bargaining agreement:

"There is an appeals process, but in the end, the commissioner's office calls the shot and the NFLPA stands aside as a compliant wimp.

"Any union worth its salt would have hung tough in negotiations to create a disciplinary panel -- one representative from management, one from the players and a neutral party -- to decide these matters."

Reusse says the next union head needs to be "willing to challenge Goodell's dictatorial powers along with maintaining a hefty percentage of revenues."

I, too, think the disciplinary policy is something the player's union should take up at the next collective bargaining negotiations. I can see why the NFLPA didn't make it an issue when Paul Tagliabue was commissioner, simply because Tagliabue didn't make it an issue. But Roger Goodell has made it prominent. Now, Pat Williams and Kevin Williams are being suspended "for violating the league's anti-doping policy," not because of Roger Goodell's personal conduct policy. Still, Goodell's actions as commissioner should make the player's union push for a change in the disciplinary policy.

I mostly agree with Pat Reusse.


Not that it will likely matter, given the collective bargaining agreement, but not only have the Williamses sued to stop their suspension, but the NFLPA is suing to stop all the related suspensions.


  1. Anonymous8:46 AM

    Taking a drug that is poorly labeled and getting in trouble for it is nuts. I even read where the NFL knew of this drug and did not tell teams/players. "What you put in your body is your responsibility". I hope the legal system has to step in. To me, that would be embarassing for the league. I agree the NFL commissioner is all powerful and needs to be slowed down. He seems to do what he wants and nobody can say it is wrong. EX:
    Great that the NFL like big hits and even does videos on it. Then fines players for big hits!

  2. Anonymous5:12 PM

    Where has this anger at the NFLPA been all these past years?

    Dont you think its a little hypocritical to start whining now?

    There is a supplement list, take a supplement off the list, its not hard to do.


  3. Actually, I've criticized Goodell as far back as May 2007, and I have suggested the union should address the disciplinary policy at the next collective bargaining negotiations. Furthermore, I frequently side with the interests of workers/unions in conflicts with management/ownership.

    I am many things, probably including a hypocrite and a whiner. In this case, I'm not sure I'm either.

    Here are some URLs of earlier posts when I've written critically of Goodell. Not all of them involve situations with Vikings (though some do--it is the subject I write about most here, after all).






  4. Anonymous9:21 AM

    I moreso meant the author of the newspaper article. Not reading a Minnesota newspaper, I have no idea if this has been written about before, but I doubt it.

    They agreed to the rules, they broke the rules, so accept the punishment.

    Bring this up at the next collective bargaining and play right into the hands of the league. Can't do anything about it now though.

    The NFLPA is short-sighted and stubborn and will surely have more screwups at the next meeting too.