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O’Neil: Richard Sherman’s rant on Roger Goodell isn’t off base

While talking about proposed rule changes in the NFL, Richard Sherman called commissioner Roger Goodell "just a suit." (AP)

While talking about proposed rule changes in the NFL, Richard Sherman called commissioner Roger Goodell “just a suit.” (AP)

Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman had some critical things to say about his boss, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

While talking to ESPN’s Jim Trotter about rule changes, including Goodell’s proposed “yellow card rule,” where two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in a game would result in an ejection, Sherman called Goodell “just a face … just a suit” who has no idea what it’s like to be on the football field. Sherman stated current and former athletes should be the ones developing the rules.

710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny O’Neil tried to explain Sherman’s perspective on Seattle’s Morning News.

“It’s like a politician who says, ‘I’m tough on crime’ yet doesn’t really have any understanding of the impact of some of the rules that they’re putting in place,” he said.

Related: If Kam Chancellor says he’s not leaving Seahawks, believe him

While it’s true that former athletes are part of committees that discuss potential rule changes and improvements to the NFL, O’Neil isn’t impressed.

“I don’t believe in the power of committees, and especially committees formed by the NFL,” he said. “The players don’t want that rule, and I understand that. I think the NFL wants it so they can appear to be holding a firm line against the players, saying ‘We’re not going to tolerate this sort of insolence and violence from our employees.’ But that’s pretty two-faced.

“I think that they are catering to a fanbase that they want to say, ‘oh my gosh they’re really trying to take the violence out of a game that is itself very violent,'” he added.

O’Neil, who is no fan of Goodell, said the embattled commissioner doesn’t mind being unpopular and is still making the NFL heaps of money, meaning he won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.

“There is no end in sight to his tenure because look at how profitable the NFL is,” he said. “Once the TV deals start going down, but they won’t. We’ve got another 20 years of this.”

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About the Author

Eric Mandel

Eric Mandel joined and 710 ESPN Seattle in August after almost a decade of reporting at daily and non-daily newspapers in Wisconsin, Iowa, and Washington.


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