Column: Goodell’s stance sparks more questions than answers

It's more than a decade late if the purpose of this exercise is to protect Dan Snyder’s reputation.

Column: Goodell’s stance sparks more questions than answers

It's more than a decade late if the purpose of this exercise is to protect Dan Snyder’s reputation.

It's two decades. Snyder quickly rose to the top of the most "Worst Sports Owners" lists shortly after he bought the Washington NFL franchise in 1999. He has not faced any serious competition since Donald Sterling was forced out by the NBA in 2014.

It is possible that Roger Goodell, the NFL commissioner, was trying to keep Snyder's Washington Football Team investigation under wraps. If the public pressure or leaks such as those that led to Jon Gruden's resignation from the Raiders, don't succeed, then perhaps next week's congressional hearings might.

Regardless of the outcome, Goodell's refusal to release the findings makes people wonder if there is more the league could be hiding.

Attorney Lisa Banks said that "the really frustrating part" of representing more than 30 women who claimed sexual harassment and abuse while working for Washington's organization was that the commissioner tried to portray himself as the champion of all those who came forward and that he is doing it to protect them.

"What he really is doing is being cowardly and hiding behind the very same people. Banks said that they want the report to be released and were open about it. "He is protecting someone, but it's not them."

Goodell is an expert on the double-standard drill. If a player is caught doing something illegal, no details are left unpunished and published. The "Deflategate" public report, which covered Tom Brady's underinflating of footballs, numbered more than 240 pages. Richie Incognito, the then-Dolphins' lineman, was accused of using racial slurs. His total weight was 144. Ray Rice's domestic violence episode generated nearly 100.

Compare that to Colts owner Jim Irsay’s 2014 arrest for driving under the influence and four preliminary charges of possessing a controlled substance. Zero pages. Or Panthers owner Jerry Richardson was facing sexual misconduct allegations and sold the franchise in 2018, just before an investigation. Zip. Bob Kraft, Patriots owner, was cleared of charges of soliciting sex at Jupiter, Florida's spa. Expert lawyering helped to drop the charges. Nada.

The NFL depends on its fans' loyalty to forget or forgive, or get distracted by its uncanny ability generate stories week after week. Urban Meyer, the Jaguars' coach, was infamous for his antics at a bar one month ago. Two weeks ago, Gruden's emails containing racist, homophobic, and misogynistic remarks -- most of which were written while he was at ESPN - led him to resign and provided plenty of material for radio and TV sports talk shows. Gruden is almost non-existent now.

The House Oversight Committee's responsibility for the investigation into the league will determine whether it fades into history. Beth Wilkinson, a lawyer, completed the NFL report in July. She examined 650,000 documents, and heard testimony of 150 witnesses. According to NFL instructions, only one conclusion was made public in a 29-paragraph report. It stated that Snyder's franchise had been "highly unprofessional", especially for women.

Snyder was fined $10,000,000 and his wife Tanya took over the day-to-day supervision.

"I believe he has been held responsible for it. Goodell stated Tuesday that the organization was held responsible at Tuesday's owner's meeting in New York. "I believe we've handed an unprecedented fine. Dan Snyder has been absent from the organization for almost four months.

Four months!

Banks stated that they don't know how much wrongdoing was committed, and therefore are unable to determine if accountability exists. An organization's internal investigation demonstrates their efforts to restore public faith. This is exactly the opposite. It's the opposite.

"But Congress has oversight and subpoena powers. We are also pushing for that lever. Perhaps there are other owners who have a conscience and will join Mark Davis (Raiders owner), calling for the release of this report."

There is no way that this could happen. Although Shad Khan, Jaguars owner, called the league's handling "unsatisfying", Jerry Jones, his Dallas counterpart, gave his blessing. Maybe Jones just wanted to keep Snyder, a perennial loser in the same division.

Snyder's reputation is still in peril. Andrew Brandt, a former NFL executive, took to Twitter to share a story from a close friend.

Brandt wrote, "I grew-up a diehard Washington supporter, difficult to see/comment." My friend took my daughters to Daniel Snyder's house, and they went on a play date with Snyder. I lost my fandom. My friend: "Thanks Dan for having my girls over.

"It's Mr. Snyder.

"Who does that?"

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