Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints quarterback, has strong sentiments toward the court decision on the Brady ruling, pointing out that Goodell has too much power over the NFL.
After Second Circuit United States Court of Appeals affirmed Tom Brady’s four-game suspension last Monday, Brees felt that the authority the NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has made him look like he’s the “judge, jury, and executioner” in the league.
Brees has publicly criticized the way Goodell and the NFL handled the whole Deflategate issue, which he believed is not dissimilar to how Bountygate was dealt with in the past.
The Bountygate scandal refers to the scheme where players of the New Orleans Saints were allegedly given bonuses or “bounties” for injuring opponents. Goodell was also the one who served them severe punishment in 2012 when it happened.
“I think we would all agree that he definitely has too much power,” Brees told SI.com’s Maggie Gray. “Any league-led investigation can’t be trusted. Nothing’s transparent about it.”
Brees agrees with the NFL Players Association that there should be a neutral arbiter when it comes to serving disciplinary actions for the players who committed any offense.
He explained, “At times, I feel like there is a desired conclusion or agenda that they have in mind and that may prevent the absolute truth from being told or the absolute facts from being presented. At the end of the day, we as the public. We as players don’t ever get to really see that. We don’t get to see those facts, those truths and those things. That’s the unfortunate part of this whole thing.”
Federal judge Richard Berman previously ruled against the NFL’s arbitration last year, citing that Goodell “dispensed his own brand of industrial justice” in the four-game suspension of the New England Patriots quarterback due to his involvement with the under-inflated balls used during a play-off game.
But the Second Circuit held the NFLPA accountable for how the events turned out because they were the ones who agreed to terms, giving the commissioner the authority he is exercising now.
As reported by ESPN, the court believed that Goodell’s actions were rightful and just, and that if there’s someone to blame, it would be the NFLPA, who gave Goodell absolute power to decide what can be considered as detrimental conduct in the league.
Goodell said of the Monday ruling by a three-judge panel, “We’re obviously pleased with the court’s decision. We think that was the right decision.”