Seattle Seahawks cornerback and player representative Richard Sherman blasted the NFL on Tuesday for mismanaging its player conduct policy. Sherman contends the policy should be part of the collective bargaining agreement and not something which NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and the 32 team owners to decide on their own.
Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman has voiced out his displeasure over the NFL's handling of its player conduct policy.
Sherman, who is also the Seahawks' new player representative, told The Seattle Times' Bob Condotta on Dec. 9 that the said policy should be part of the league's collective bargaining agreement instead of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and the 32 team owners deciding on their own:
"We would hope that this process would be collectively bargained just like everything else in our league and just like every other decision that is made. But at this point we haven't seen it so...we are trying to figure out how they are deciding to make decisions without our input and it's frustrating.
"This league, the revenue, the money is generated by on-the-field actions and what the players do. A lot of times you hear the owners say we are partners in this business. We are partners. I think both sides should have an opinion, and that's not just on drug policies but it has to do with a team in LA (Los Angeles), personal conduct.
"I think every time a decision is made the players should have input on it and I think the way is making things up as they go along is poor management and players won't stand for it...we are expected to be professionals in everything we do and execute at a high level and we expect the same thing from the guys running our league."
FOX Sports' Mike Garafolo notes Goodell was "criticized harshly" for issuing a two-game suspension on former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice for physically abusing his then-fiancee in a New Jersey casino elevator in February. Goodell vowed to strengthen the NFL's player conduct policy with his season-long suspension of Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson as manifestation.
Garafolo also issued a statement from the NFL which claims the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) is trying to limit the commissioner's power. Among the ways to do this include:
- "Punishing players who are accused or convicted of felonies but not misdemeanors, with the league noting the latter designation is used in many states for issues involving family violence and assault;
- "Precluding a player being placed on administrative paid leave without either his consent or the consent of the NFLPA;
- "Time served for all players who are placed on paid leave and then subsequently suspended, which is the crux of the argument in Peterson's pending grievance;
- "No discipline for players after acquittal or when charges are dropped. The league would like to retain the authority to act in such cases because, in its opinion, 'the standard for criminal convictions is higher than for violations of a workplace policy;'
- "Withholding discipline in all cases until the legal process has played out. Goodell has repeatedly stated he will continue to reserve the right to punish those players who qualify as repeat offenders while their legal case is pending."
Garafolo adds the NFL says NFLPA president Eric Winston and the league's player representatives haven't been cooperative. For his part, Winston labeled the two camps' latest meeting a "farce" because he insists the NFL already ironed out its player conduct policy before the NFLPA even had a chance to have a say on it.
The league's owners will meet with Goodell in Dallas on Dec. 10 to discuss the NFL's player conduct policy, per FOX Sports.
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