Blog Entry

Goodell explains Polamalu fine for cell call

Posted on: October 27, 2011 4:25 pm
Edited on: October 27, 2011 5:17 pm
No exceptions: players can't use cell phones on the sideline during games. (US PRESSWIRE)

Posted by Ryan Wilson

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell appeared on On the Record w/ Greta Van Susteren Wednesday night to talk about the usual fare -- player safety, expansion and the like -- in addition to several issues worth mentioning here.

Van Susteren asked Goodell about the league's decision to fine Steelers safety Troy Polamalu for using a cell phone on the sidelines during a game (that's illegal), even though the call was to Polamalu's wife to let her know he was fine after suffering concussion-like symptoms.

Several days after it happened, head coach Mike Tomlin said Polamalu shouldn't be fined.

"[Troy] had a history of concussion-like symptoms and so forth in the past. [His wife] was concerned. In this era of player safety, you would think that common sense would prevail in regards to some of those things. It wasn't a personal call. He wasn't checking on his bank account. He was talking to his wife to let her know that he was fine, and that was it."

Common sense lost out to the unbending interpretation of the rules: Polamalu owes the NFL $10,000.

"Well, I think it's always a problem trying to have a rule that applies to everybody," Goodell began (you can view the interview here). "Troy's a wonderful young man and there was concern about his health and there are ways of us getting word to families when there is an injury, and to make sure they understand that the player is okay. But we also don't want to have all our players using phones on the sidelines for texting."

Goodell did concede that "When someone's injured and you're family, you want to speak to the individual. And you want to hear their voice. You want to make sure they're okay. And that's something that probably could've happened by taking him off the field and allowing him access to be able to call his wife."

The lesson? The rules apply to everyone … except, you know, when they don't.

Van Susteren, a long-time Packers shareholder, also asked the commissioner about whether the organization would sell more shares.

"I think so," Goodell said. "As you well know as a season ticket holder and an owner, they are trying to expand the stadium. They will add probably six or seven thousand more seats for fans, which I think there's a great demand for that. And as part of that, we will likely approve another issuing of the stock so you'll have a chance to buy some more."

Van Susteren warned that Goodell shouldn't get any ideas about putting a dome on Lambeau Field. "We take great pride in suffering through that snow and cold," she said.

"You're not going to hear that suggestion from me," the commissioner responded. "I also love to see football played in the elements. That's what the game's all about … and I think the experience of going up there in Lambeau in the elements is a great thing in football."

The New England Patriots will travel to Heinz Field to square off against Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday. Jason Horowitz and's Pat Kirwan to preview this intense showdown. Watch the game on CBS at 4:15 PM ET.

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Since: Apr 4, 2007
Posted on: October 27, 2011 6:20 pm

Goodell explains Polamalu fine for cell call

The NFL has a bigger problem with players who treat their wives like punching bags. Maybe they should use Troy as a role model for being a devoted family man instead of fining him.

Since: Apr 28, 2007
Posted on: October 27, 2011 6:13 pm

Goodell explains Polamalu fine for cell call

Goodell is a total idiot.  I am defending a Steeler for my 2 or 3rd time in a week.  Fine him Yes, $10,000, No.  If he was calling for pizza or whatever $10,000 is fine but he was calling his wife or a Doctor gave the phone to his wife.  I heard a couple different versions of the story but one thing is the same in all of them.  He wanted his wife to know he was OK.  $1,000 or $2,500, sort of appropriate.  It follows the rules but looks at the circumstances, etc.

Roger Goodell is a moran.  He is ruining the NFL like his father stunk up the Senate.  Please get rid of this clown.  He such a joke.  He worries about concussions but wants to add 2 more games.  Maybe he will enforce a rule saying anyone who gets a concussion in the last two games of the expanded season will be fined $50,000.  That'll fix it.  I am glad he is getting that dress code in order.  Those yellow shoes could be the beginning of the end for Western civilization.  The fans love the characters (remember us Roger, the reason you have a job, sadly in my opinion, at all).  Fine them, sure but $1,000 enough.  Someone on the Steelers, Greenwood or White use to wear some funny color shoes, got fine every week and if I remember correctly, Steeler fans help me out here, Mr. Rooney paid the fine for him.  And Mr. Rooney tended to be a more conservative owner but recognized the fans loved it and it was good for business.  They were having a little fun.

I hated Tags but Goodell is worse.  This is what happenes when you get lawyers involved, look at the House and Senate and the White House!  Who was it who said (W. Shakespeare????????), "First, Kill All the Lawyers"!  Defending a Steeler is against all my natural urges but Good Job Troy, you are not an idiot like Roger.  And I hope you really are OK!

Since: Nov 4, 2010
Posted on: October 27, 2011 5:26 pm

Goodell explains Polamalu fine for cell call

A rule is a rule. It's not like they couldn't patch her call through to any of the multiple phones on the sideline. This is the 21st century for crying out loud. Now the league doesn't have time to check his phone record and confirm he was calling his wife. Nor should they. If he wanted to call his wife he could have stepped into the tunnel and called her if it was that important, it's not like they were going to let him back on the field after suffering concussion-like symptoms.

Since: Feb 9, 2011
Posted on: October 27, 2011 5:07 pm

Goodell explains Polamalu fine for cell call

Goodell is a 100%, complete ass-wipe. He's unable to apply logic, common sense and reason to anything, anything at all! Whether its overeas expansion (put a team in London, right, that'll work), the 18 game season, ridiculous fines arbitarily handed out and then the topper, not fining certain actions or people (Harbaugh/Schwartz, Bert Farve). The guy is completly out of contol, like Caligula.

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