Ask the Commissioner
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM ETCommissioner Roger Goodell
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will chat live with NFL Nation on Tuesday, April 20, at 2 p.m. ET.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comGood afternoon. This is an exciting week for the NFL, our teams and our fans. Tonight we announce the schedule at 7 pm ET on NFL.com and NFL Network. Then we will have our first primetime Draft, Thursday at 7:30 pm ET (round 1), Friday at 6 pm ET (rounds 2 and 3), and finishing up on Saturday starting at 10 am ET (rounds 4 â€“ 7). This new format will allow us to bring the Draft to more people and itâ€™s part of our continuing effort to innovate and improve everything we do. It's great to be with you. Let's get right to your questions and comments.
Barbara, the shadow of the NEW JETS stadium
2:00 PM ETHi Commissioner: Happy Schedule Release Day If I were to show up at 280 Park Ave, could I get a tour?? Is there a gift shop? And is John Buzzeo still employed as.. whatever he was?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comBarbara, thank you. If you are in NY I will make sure we arrange a special tour. Unfortunately we do not have a gift shop here at our offices. John Buzzeo is still with us and we are still trying to figure out what he is.
Michael, South Carolina
2:02 PM ETWhy move the draft to a week night at prime time when you will be competing with regular TV and the NBA playoffs? It will also prevent many west cost viewers from seeing the first five to ten picks. Seems that it was very popular on Sat and Sun. Why change?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comMichael, you have to continually improve which requires to change in an intelligent fashion. By moving to a three-day Draft in primetime we actually will be able to make the draft available to more fans which is our number one objective. We will learn a lot from this experience and hopefully our fans will find this a positive change.
Eamonn, Dublin, Ireland
2:05 PM ETWhile the conduct code is a necessary aspect of the NFL, dont you think punishing someone like Ben Roethlisberger - who disobeyed no law - is enforcing a rather stringent and subjective morality standard upon players, and ultimately is somewhat dictatorial?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comEamonn, the code of conduct was developed with our players and clubs to protect the integrity of the game and the reputation of those participating. While there are disputed facts regarding the Ben Roethlisberger case, this pattern of behavior is unacceptable and does not meet the high standards of the NFL. We owe that to the current and former players, the NFL and our fans.
Denny Perry, Fajardo, Puerto Rico
2:09 PM ETWhy is it that the Pittsburgh Steelers are being fined for their players actions.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comYou are referring to a policy that holds our clubs responsible for their players' actions. This hopefully encourages them to provide the necessary resources and support to make good decisions. If a team has more than one of its players disciplined in a year for violating the personal conduct or drug policies, the team has to forfeit a portion of the players' salary.
2:12 PM ETHello Mr. Goodell. How are you today? Now to my real question;who will the New Orleans Saints play in the regular season opener?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comTim, I'm doing well. I know I will get in trouble from our scheduling makers for releasing this in advance, but the Saints will be hosting the Minnesota Vikings for our Kickoff game. It should be a great celebration in a great city.
The full schedule will be released tonight at 7:00 pm ET on NFL.com and NFL Network.
Hamed, Mumbai, India
2:14 PM ETWhat do you see as the future of the NFL as it relates to becoming a worldwide organization. I am a citizen of India and typically reside in India and love the NFL. I watch online each week and follow regularily, one day I hope to make it to TN to see my beloved Titans play. Any chance the NFL seeks opportunities to play outside the U.S. in countries besides Canada and Europe?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comHamed, thanks for the note and thanks for your support of the NFL. We are a worldwide organization and distribute our games on a global basis. Glad you were able to enjoy the games on NFL.com. As technology improves, we will be making our games available on other platforms including the new RedZone channel which we will deliver on mobile phones this coming season. We have played games in Canada, Mexico, Australia, Japan, and Europe. We will continue to expand our international efforts including the playing of those games. Hope we can get to India someday and hope you can get to Tennessee for a game.
2:17 PM ETHow do you feel about implementing the new Playoff overtime rule into the regular season as well?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comNathan, we are discussing the expansion of the new overtime rules into the regular season with our competition committee, players association and partners. I expect we will discuss it at our May meetings and determine whether we would implement it for this coming season. There are a number of factors that we will need to consider, however the change for the postseason was our objective and will be a positive change for this coming season. The fans have raised this as a significant issue and the clubs have responded by making that change.
2:19 PM ETWhat is the status of the discussions between the league and the NFLPA? What is the main disagreement? What is the likelihood of a holdout next season?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comMatt, there have been no recent developments with respect to our collective bargaining agreement. We are in an uncapped system and there cannot be any work stoppage for the 2010 season. We need to work hard to develop a new agreement with our players that will be fair to the players, clubs and our fans.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comThe main point of contention is the significant economic changes that have taken place in our industry. We have to adjust the system to today's economic realities. Moreover, the system is overly complicated. There are many ways we can create a better system, for example with a new rookie pay system that will reward performance on the field not where they are drafted, and overall will result in a win-win-win for players, teams and fans.
Paul Jefferson, New York
2:25 PM ETWhat steps do you believe should be done to continue to grow the NFL product even during difficult times?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comPaul, good question. Our most important focus is continuing to improve the quality of what we do. This includes the stadium experience, the integrity and competitiveness of our game, and the innovative ways we make our games available to our fans. The NFL has achieved success because we always believe in better.
Daniel Carrigy, Sydney Australia
2:28 PM ETHi Mr Goodell, just wondering, what is your favourite experience so far during your time as commissioner?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comInteracting with fans, whether it's on a fan chat such as we are doing right now or at NFL games. I was a fan and still am a great fan of the game. I enjoy it as much as all of you.
Dave M, Poconos, PA
2:30 PM ETWhat team treats you the best when you attend games at their stadiums. And what determines what games you attend?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comDave, I frequently get this question on how I choose which games to attend. I try to get to every NFL stadium over a short period of time. In addition, I have certain obligations surrounding a number of special events, including the opening of new stadiums, anniversaries or other significant NFL events or business. I am usually on the road three out of four weekends during the season. By the way, all teams and fans treat me well.
Jarell, Los Angeles
2:32 PM ETCommissioner Goodell, what is the current progress on NFL in LA. We have been approved for the stadium construction by the state and last announced the league liked the design, so when is all this going to be a reality?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comJarell, there are some positive developments in Los Angeles and with the construction of a new stadium. While the stadium in the City of Industry has gotten many construction approvals, it still needs to be determined how to pay for it. This is a big challenge particularly in this economic climate. It is one of the issues we are addressing in the context of our collective bargaining agreement. We want to get back to LA. Hopefully it will happen soon.
Mark Mieczkowski, Nanticoke, PA
2:35 PM ETAfter a very successful Pro Bowl in South Florida, why did the NFL decide to move the 2011 Pro Bowl game back to Hawaii? Wouldn't it be wise to have the Pro Bowl in South Florida after having attracted the biggest attendance for the Pro Bowl in 50 years?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comWe had a great experience in South Florida and appreciate the tremendous fan support for the Pro Bowl and the Super Bowl. We have a commitment to play the next two Pro Bowls in Hawaii which has been a great partner of the NFL. We will be retaining one aspect of our Pro Bowl change by playing the game the week before the Super Bowl. This was received very well by our fans as evidenced by the dramatic increase in our ratings and the attendance you noted.
Jerry Zhang, Beijing
2:37 PM ETHow do you think Ed Wang's draft will impact on NFL's Chinese market.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comJerry, I've heard a lot about Ed Wang. Steve Wyche did a great story about him on NFL.com in the past few weeks. He certainly comes from a tremendously athletic family as both his parents are Olympians. NFL.com's draft experts predict he will go on Friday night or Saturday. We have an office in China and continue to promote our game. Hopefully, Mr. Wang will have a great impact.
Rob J, CT
2:42 PM ETHello Mr. Goodell, First thanks for all your hard work improving the game. My question is in regards to the recent discussion regarding players sustaining concussions while playing football and there long term effects. I was wondering what is being done in terms of making the game safer, as many studies seem to be putting football in a negative light. Thanks Rob
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comRob, player safety is a priority for the NFL. We have modified our rules to take dangerous techniques out of the game. We continue to strive to improve equipment from helmets to padding.
We have modified our medical procedures with respect to return to play and continue to invest in research to find out more about the effects of concussions. Most significantly, we have played a leadership role in raising awareness of concussions in all sports and the need to be conservative in its treatment. This is good for everybody who plays sports and the NFL is making a big difference.
2:45 PM ETYou must pardon my geeky fandom, but when you are in Green Bay are you ever still awestruck by the history and tradition, that has taken place here, when you step into Lambeau Field?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comJustin, that's not geeky fandom. That's just tremendous respect for one of the great facilities in the NFL. Everytime I come into Lambeau Field, I share your sense of tradition and the great history of our game. Most importantly, the fans of Wisconsin are tremendous supporters of the Packers and the NFL and I always enjoy the opportunity to speak with them.
Tripp Roy, DC via NOLA
2:48 PM ETCommissioner Goodell, I enjoyed the show about you and Jim Mora's ascent of Mt. Rainier....Did you climb any mountains beforehand? How should I train?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comTripp, don't do it. But seriously, it was a great experience, but you need to be physically and mentally prepared. I was forced to climb a lot of stairs since I was not able to climb any mountains in advance. Also, get terrific guides, which we were fortunate to have. Have fun. Be safe. Play 60 (x 10).
Bo Jack, Canton
2:51 PM ETHas there been any more thought about reducing preseason games and adding regular season games?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comYes, this is consistent with our theme of improving everything that we do. Fans consistently tell me they want less preseason games and more regular season games. That is why we find the concept of restructuring our season from 16 regular season and four preseason games to 18 regular season and two preseason games attractive while staying within the 20 game format. This is improving the quality of the NFL for our fans.
Colby Engelson, Seattle, WA
2:53 PM ETIs there a chance that cold weather cities could host a Super Bowl? I hear NY is in the bidding...I think that Qwest Field in Seattle would provide a unique and intense atmosphere for the NFL championship game...
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comColby, at our meetings next month we will be considering the site of Super Bowl XLVIII. The three candidate cities are South Florida, Tampa Bay and New York. Obviously the new stadium in NY is open air and would result in playing the Super Bowl in cold weather conditions. Many traditionalists believe that is the way should be played, but there also is recognition that NY is a unique market. The ownership will make that decision next month, but don't be hopeless in Seattle.
Jack Brockhaus, Utah
2:59 PM ETIt's good to see the NFL trying to bring more competitiveness to the end of the regular season. Will there be other incentives to get teams to compete later in the season, or are the divisional games the only motivation planned this season?
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comJack, we continue to look to see what steps we can take to ensure competitive games throughout the season. In the schedule that will be released this evening, there will be 28 divisional games in the final three weeks and all 16 games in the final week will be between divisional opponents. We think this will have a meaningful impact on the approach to late season games, but we will continue to evaluate other alternatives.
Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL.comThanks. I've enjoyed chatting with you. I hope you will be watching the Draft over the next few days.
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