The appointment of Roger Goodell on appeal by Deshan Watson, former NJ Attorney General Peter Harvey, could see the Cleveland Browns quarterback indefinitely suspended and a hefty fine this week.
Or Harvey could slightly extend Watson’s six-game ban, imposed by neutral judge Susan Robinson, revealing the process is a negotiated settlement rather than the league and union.
Miami-based attorney Brad Sohn, who has prosecuted several cases involving football’s collective bargaining agreement, believes it will be the latter: something like an 8-for-10 play and a hefty fine.
“I look at this situation as a case study in optics,” Sohan told the Daily News on Saturday morning.
While Watson’s alleged conduct is punishable, from a legal standpoint the imposition of an indefinite suspension of a league complaint could essentially be viewed as Goodell’s coerced rebuke of Robinson, and thus personally. There’s this whole new collective bargaining agreement with the union. conduct politics.
Goodell had already assigned Harvey to hear the league’s appeal, rather than serve as the final judge and jury himself, which the CBA authorizes him to do.
The NFL makes no secret that it is still pushing for an indefinite suspension as well as a fine and mandatory treatment. But the appointments of Robinson (jointly of the NFL and NFLPA) and Harvey (of the league) distance both the NFL and the union from a final decision.
So a middle ground with Watson — league negotiations stalled before Robinson’s rule — the construction process allowed both the NFL and NFLPA to back out and claim it worked.
“Doing this — essentially conveying a public display of the process at arm’s length with various matched individuals — makes the NFLPA look as good as they can say the new CBA is in the works,” Sohn said. “And the NFL looks like they respect that process, but also instill discipline. So if things go that way, both sides can claim a modest victory.”
According to multiple reports, Watson’s side were ready to accept 6-8 games in talks with the league before Robinson opted for a six-game ban. Meanwhile, the NFL faces nothing less than a 12-game ban and an $8-$10 million fine.
If Harvey extends Watson’s suspension indefinitely, the union can sue in federal court, but it will not contest the original six-game suspension, and precedent has shown that in NFL cases in general, doing so delays the inevitability of time.
However, Sohan doesn’t think it will come to that. He says Watson’s case is not black and white from a legal standpoint. Her pattern of alleged sexual assault clearly warrants discipline, but even a Texas grand jury found insufficient evidence to indict her on criminal charges.
“The NFL is vulnerable to legitimate criticism when it doesn’t act,” Sohn said. However, the opinion of a seasoned legal scholar is that the action falls short of rhetoric as it is more conversation than meets the eye.
Fresh from their embarrassing Kyler Murray contract drama, the Arizona Cardinals are coming off a second straight week of high-profile dysfunction.
Wide receiver Marquis Brown was arrested for driving 126 mph in a 65 mph zone. The team placed running back coach James Saxon on administrative leave after it was revealed he had been charged with two counts of domestic violence.
And coach Cliff Kingsbury offered an interesting explanation for why he called up Murray from the touchline to backup quarterback in a practice session.
“I just wanted him to know, ‘Hey, this shit ain’t easy,'” Kingsbury told reporters. “He starts shaking his head every time I call him there. I’m like, ‘Okay, come on, big dog.’”
I wonder if Murray will count that as homework. The Cardinals QB had to quarantine for five days after testing positive for COVID-19.
Just another week in Arizona.
conditioning? Sounds familiar
Giants coach Brian Dabol twice mentioned after Friday night’s practice at MetLife Stadium that his team needed to improve their “conditioning.”
“I think we need to improve our condition,” said Dabol. “That’s why we did these two long drives [for the first-string offense and defense], And I think everyone can get a sense of where they stand personally. But overall that will be the focus this week.”
Former coach Joe Judge put a lot of emphasis on fitness. Brian Flores, former Dolphins coach, interviewed the Giants for the vacancy. Both Judge and Flores are known to have regular bouts of conditioning and mistakes in training, followed by penalties or sprints.
Dabol’s spring and early summer plans weren’t particularly busy in comparison. The Giants medical staff’s plan for player management focused primarily on spring recovery.
During both spring and summer, Dabol sometimes encourages players to run sprints between games to simulate playing down the key when tired. He’s a student of Bill Belichick, like Judge and Flores, so he values conditioning and knows it’s important.
But Dabol also said in June that he doesn’t believe in conditioning for conditioning’s sake.
“Just to say that we’re conditioning, that is — we really have a specific plan about when we’re doing it and why we’re doing it,” Dabol said during the OTA.
Back then, however, the Giants’ freshman head coach offered that qualification: “If we’re not doing well enough in practice, chasing down ball in hand or as an offensive lineman or chasing after people trying. To get down there and get an extra block, you have to make up for it with something else.”
Now Dabol says conditioning will be a “focus” Thursday night near the Giants’ first preseason game in New England at Foxboro.
It will be interesting to see how Dabol directs plans to improve the team’s conditioning work internally and see how different the Giants’ next drills can be.
about the league
Rams coach Sean McVay told reporters that Jimmy Garoppolo’s market got more interesting this week with the news that Rams QB Matthew Stafford is suffering from throwing arm elbow pain, which is “a bit unusual for a quarterback.” McVay said the injury is similar to a “pitcher tackle” in baseball. “That’s something I’ve never navigated as a coach with a quarterback,” he said. The Cleveland Browns appear to be Garoppolo’s most likely landing spot, with Watson expected to miss most or all of the season following Goodell’s call-up, but if the 49ers can’t find a business partner and are forced to let Garoppolo free, can Jimmy G sign with La Ram?if the reigning Super Bowl champions step up or need insurance why not? ,
I like when the Las Vegas Raiders win the hard-fought AFC West provided they strengthen their offensive line. Right guard Lester Cotton was impressive in Thursday night’s Hall of Fame game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, but with left tackle Colton Miller resting, reserve left tackle Brandon Parker (particularly) and right tackle Alex Leatherwood, were up they are not up to par. The Raiders have high hopes for Josh McDaniels’ first season as head coach. You need a line that suits your ideas…
Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton is buried on the team’s wide receiver depth chart. He saw significant timing in Friday practice with a third wire offense. Other teams know, but as the Slayton projects continue, Giants GM Joe Scion doesn’t have much clout to execute the trade. Teams are more likely to wait for the Giants and rely on Slayton to cut and kill free agency where they can sign him without giving assets to the Giants. It’s early in camp, so it’s always possible that injuries to other players could save Slayton. But it doesn’t feel good…
Schoen and the Giants need more depth in situations like offensive tackles, corners, tight ends and running backs, so Schoen will be heavily involved in the August 30th final cut and will be isolated from the other 31 teams. One offensive tackle reportedly available commercially is the Chicago Bears’ second tackle of the year, 24-year-old Teven Jenkins, who had rookie surgery in 2021, played just six games with two starts last season, and this one new trainer Matt Eberfluss sat outside under the camp all year. The Bears are unlikely to be able to get more than one late-round pick for the former Oklahoma State second-rounder. But it’s still unclear how healthy he is, and NFL front offices have to look primarily to his pre-draft ratings to judge his suitability.
he said this
“Mr. Watson’s pattern of behavior is stronger than any reviewed by the NFL.” — Retired Judge Sue L. Robinson in her 16-page decision on Watson