Bill Simmons is among the major names at NFL broadcast partner ESPN to call for Roger Goodell to resign, joining a chorus which includes Jason Whitlock and Keith Olbermann. Simmons spoke at-length about the Ray Rice investigation during his weekly podcast with Cousin Sal on Tuesday.
“I had a lot of problems with how they handled it,” he said, around the 25-minute mark. “I don’t think by itself it was fireable, but I think when you add the other 8-9 things that Goodell has done, I think he should step down. I think we need a new Commissioner.”
On a podcast earlier this week with Michelle Beadle, Simmons said that it wouldn’t shock him if there was a cover-up of the league office having seen the casino surveillance tapes. “What kind of politicians cover up things when you look at American history? It’s usually people that aren’t smart enough to have the job they have, and are super stubborn and arrogant about the power they have.”
The NFL’s Ray Rice Response Was Classic Roger Goodell, Which is the Problem
Simmons has long been critical of Goodell; he may have been the first major sportswriter to skewer the Commissioner in print. He yearned for major sports commissioners to face re-election in a 2012 column entitled “Hierarchy of Hypocrites,” and wrote in 2010 that Goodell was a master manipulator of the mainstream media:
I keep going back to the “bad parent” analogy and Roger Goodell, who’s done a masterful job manipulating the mainstream media these past few years, benefitting mostly from the fact the previous regime was out of touch. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I think Goodell is a total hypocrite for pretending to care about the welfare of his players as he’s pushing for an 18-game regular season that would lead to more injuries, more concussions, more collateral damage, more everything. Hey, Roger: If you cared about the welfare of the players, you’d shorten the season to 15 games and add another week of byes. Right? But hey, that would cost owners money. Instead, you’ll continue to position yourself as the Sheriff of Player Safety, puff out your chest, crack down on hard hits and swagger around like you’re Tim Olyphant in “Justified.” Meanwhile, if the players’ union doesn’t agree to your 18-game schedule, we’re headed for a lockout.
It is certainly ironic that Roger Goodell, who’s stated mission is to defend The Shield at all costs, has presided over a series of debacles that have tarnished it more than ever.
Related: Keith Olbermann and Jason Whitlock, Two Key Voices at NFL Broadcast Partner ESPN, Have Called for Roger Goodell’s Resignation
Related: ESPN Legal Analyst: NFL Security Has Been Digging Up Information and Hiding it For Years
Related: Steve Bisciotti Sends Email to Ravens Fans, Says Team Stopped Investigating Ray Rice in March