The latest chapter in the book of NFL Greed & Corruption details how the NFL tried to influence a study on concussions and brain disease. The report is pretty cut and dry. I’m not sure about the legality of anything they did, but regardless, a handful of these guys should be in fucking prison. The quick version of the report is that the NFL gave money to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to the tune of $30 million. $16 million was to be used to fund the study in question. When the grant for the study was given to a Boston University doctor over a doctor who WORKS FOR THE NFL, the league lobbied to have the BU doc removed. But it seems the people at the NIH were able to Google “conflict of interest” and decided to not change their original decision. In turn, the NFL responded by pulling their $16 million dollars back, forcing the study to be conducted with taxpayer money instead. Even Bond villains think that’s fucked up.
|Wait, you took the money AWAY? |
The NFL wants a company man so they can conclude there’s no definitive link between concussions and CTE, and that football players aren’t more at risk. Remember how the tobacco companies once claimed in court that nicotine wasn’t addictive? Same strategy. The NFL is pretty much trying to say the world is flat, and when scientists say it isn’t, they tell the scientists to go fuck themselves. The lying about head trauma in football isn’t new. It actually spans a couple decades. Let me introduce to you Dr. Elliot Pellman. Pellman was the head of the concussion committee for the NFL from its inception in 1994 to 2007. He’s been a lead on studies with statements such as “Concussions are minor injuries” and “Professional football players do not sustain frequent repetitive blows to the brain on a regular basis.” Now you’re probably saying to yourself, “Surely he can’t be involved with the NFL anymore.” WRONG! And don’t call me Shirley. Pellman is the goddamn Medical Director for the league, and acted as the NFL’s lead contact to the NIH regarding the study. Is this real life? Is anyone fucking home? I’d be more comfortable with Dr. Van Nostrand, a Juilliard trained dermatologist, running the show.
The reason for the attempted tea-bagging of science and common sense is the same reason the NFL is always in a mess. Greed. This hurts their bottom line. And while Goodell and the crooks in the league office are all insufferable douchebags, they’re taking the cues from the billionaire owners. I mean, imagine if guys like Jim Irsay and Jerry Jones were signing your checks. All you need to do is read some of their quotes on the subject. Colts owner Jim Irsay has compared the risks of football to the side effects of taking aspirin. Perhaps he has a deeper pharmaceutical understanding than you or I because this is the same guy who was arrested in 2014 with more pills on him than a CVS. Only those pills weren’t aspirins, so who’s to say? Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has said that it is “absurd” to say there is a link between football and CTE. That’s right. He used the word absurd. Because he’s an asshole, and he doesn’t know the internet exists.
Greed and corruption isn’t an isolated incident for the NFL. It’s their business model. The level of not giving a shit is actually impressive. You almost have to respect it. Like when the NFL owners tried to hide $100 million in ticket revenue from the Players Union. The owners made up some exemption out of thin air. Literally made it all up so they didn’t have to share the money. The league called it a “technical accounting issue.” That kind of stuff is why Thurman Merman’s dad is exploring mountains for the next couple years. Or how about when every October rolls around, the NFL turns pink for Breast Cancer Awareness. A noble cause, sure. However, in a shocking turn of events, it turns out the NFL cares more making money off some pink gear than actually helping your mammary health. I won’t bore you with all the numbers and math because I know the audience of seven people who might read this. (Editor's Note: We had 18 last month sir!) But it boils down to about 8% of all the money spent on pink merchandise actually being donated to cancer research. And it ends up averaging a donation of around $31k per NFL team. Is that better than nothing? Of course. But for reference, in 2014, the 32 NFL teams divided $7.3 Billion in revenue.
Roger Goodell loves to use the word “integrity.” He’s constantly defending the league's actions based on the context of the “integrity of the game.” Only these people have none. So what exactly is their frame of reference? Goodell and the league don’t know how to run an actual unbiased investigation. So trying to influence the concussion study is the least surprising news of all time. Here are a couple more examples of the NFL being full of shit:
1. Bounty-gate - Remember this nonsense with the Saints? The league hammered them with penalties. Couple years later?...Oops, it turns out the NFL lied about some of the facts they found and Paul Tagliabue reversed Goodell's ruling on all player discipline handed out.
2. The Ray Rice video fiasco - This was a doozy for Goodell. He suspended Rice 2 games (fewer games than if he smoked pot) for punching his wife unconscious and dragging her lifeless body out an elevator. A month later, the video of the actual punch hit the web. Outrage ensued. Roger then claimed he never saw the video. A lie so ridiculous, it made the North Korean leader blush. The tape was sent to the NFL long before it went public. Also, Rice allegedly told Goodell what happened inside the elevator. So when Ray told him he gave his wife a Tyson right hook into the next dimension, I can only imagine Goodell’s reaction was, “Well, was she provoking you? Two games.” After the entire country told Rog he was an asshole, he tried to re-suspend Rice more games. Only that’s a double punishment for the same crime. Rice took the league to court for this and won. There was an investigation into the league's handling of the entire incident. Would you believe this investigation concluded the NFL did nothing wrong?
|Our understanding is that she went sleepies in the elevator.|
If you didn’t think that as a bitter Patriots fan, I wasn’t going to bring up the injustice being done to Tom Terrific, you’re a maroon. Just think about this. EVERYONE knows that the NFL has been completely dishonest and unethical about ALL of the incidents mentioned so far. They’ve tried to strong-arm medical studies. They’ve led biased investigations and been caught lying about the independence of those same investigations. If you ask John Doe (sounds made up) about all these things, he’s going to be like “Oh yeah, the NFL lied. Everyone knows.” Yet, ask a non-Pats fan about Brady and air pressure, they take the NFL and its investigation at face value and Tom’s guilty as charged. It BOGGLES THE MIND!
|Pictured: The gauge used to measure NFL footballs|
The NFL is redefining the art of bullshitting. They continue to lie about nearly everything, and continue to get caught at every turn. Anytime I see a press conference or hear an interview of Roger Goodell’s, I think about a great exchange from the movie “The Outlaw Josey Wales” after Fletcher realizes he’s been double-crossed…
SENATOR: And Fletcher, there’s an old saying: To the victors belong the spoils.
FLETCHER: There’s another old saying, Senator: Don’t piss down my back and tell me it’s raining.