Big Lead Sports Bar

4/21/2010

DETAILS OF GOODELL'S LETTER TO ROETHLISBERGER


The NFL has made their suspension of Ben Roethlisberger official, and they've released a lengthy statement that includes excerpts from Roger Goodell's letter to the QB. Roethlisberger "must undergo a comprehensive behavioral evaluation by medical professionals and will be suspended without pay for the first six games of the regular season for conduct detrimental to the NFL in violation of the league’s personal conduct policy".

I've been following the back-and-forth that's gone on across various forms of media today, and I feel like the following point needs made, for everyone who said this isn't fair for Roethlisberger: don't forget that this is a business. If you believe for one second that Goodell has enjoyed benching one of his league's biggest stars (as well as the incredible scrutiny of himself and his policies), I think you're terribly misled. And in that same vein, I can't imagine that the Steelers were enthralled at the prospect of dealing their two-time Super Bowl-winning QB, of which there are a grand total of two in the NFL.

The easy thing would've been for the team and the league to look the other way. It certainly happened enough in Major League Baseball with their PED problem for a very long time. But consider that the Steelers are basically giving up on their franchise QB 15 months after Super Bowl 43, and the league just put him on ice for up to six weeks.  That's heavy stuff. Don't assume you know all the details of what's gone down with Roethlisberger in the past, because I sure don't. Say what you want, but whatever problems were there with Ben must have been extremely bad, because from a business point of view, this is a major blow to both the Steelers and the NFL.


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31 comments:

Jon said...

"Don't assume you know all the details of what's gone down with Roethlisberger in the past, because I sure don't. Say what you want, but whatever problems were there with Ben must've been extremely bad, because from a business point of view, this is a major blow to both the Steelers and the NFL."

But it is ok to assume that the problems must have been extremely bad? How about we stop assuming that there is more to this story than what has come out. If you read the excerpts from the letter it seems that Ben gets raked over the coals primarily for providing and encouraging underage girls to consume alcohol not hints toward more tawdry business that we don't know about. 6 games seems extreme to me but business is business, ya know. I just hope the Steelers are just posturing so they can save face with the fans while keeping Ben on the roster for a long time to come.

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

I agree entirely with what Don is saying here. There has clearly got to be more than meets the eye regarding the Big Doofus and he gets everything he deserves.

I just get riled up when fans of other teams start throwing their two cents when they all should be cautious of casting stones from their own little glass huts.

All of the Bungles and Raisins fans drive me up a wall acting high and mighty over this when one of them had a player sent to an early grave last year due to off-field behavior and the other team's Marquee player helped send someone there.

Oh well, Ben's idiocy is tearing the Steeler Nation at the seams. Can we all just agree he is a moron and got what he deserved because we are facing a tough road ahead to start the 2010 season?

Jon said...

Serious question: How is clear there is more than meets the eye here?

Corey said...

Jon, if you'd open your eyes, you would see. Burress, i'm with you and agree with everything don is saying.

Jon said...

Since your eyes are apparently open why don't you tell me what makes it so clear that there is more to this story instead of just telling me to open my eyes.

mondesishouse said...

Why is there more than meets the eye? Because there's no good reason why a team would arbitrarily decide to harpoon its future, unless they're in the business of losing money and/or games.

Spatula said...

One of Goodell's charges against B.R. is that he furnished alcoholic drinks for underage girls. I guess the laws in New York and Georgia are different than everywhere else where it's the bar's responsibility to card patrons.

Jon said...

I could buy that if/when Ben is traded. Thank you for a real answer.

Corey said...

nice lawyer work spatula! and jon, did you need a conviction before you believed OJ did it? do you still think OJ is innocent? i mean, he was never convicted...

i could spend hours researching and regurgitating everything that is out there in terms of what took place that night and the days and weeks to follow and post them on here for you, but i'd be wasting my time wouldn't i?

go find it on the internet yourself, read it yourself, and come to your own conclusions. the league, the steelers, and most sports fan following this case have come to a similar conclusion.

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

I wish I didn't fall flat in using the OJ joke from Big Daddy last week because this would have been a much better time!


Hey OJ, remember when you played for the 49ers? Did you kill Bill Walsh?

Koz said...

Six games seems high, but I expect he will toe the line and receive a reduction in sentence.

Because of the nature of the policy, I expect Goodell will continue to increase the length of suspensions as problems continue among NFL high profile players. If the goal is to curb behavior, if 4 games doesn't get people's attention, then he'll try 6 and then 8, then whole seasons, etc.

Jon said...

The thing is I have read it for myself. This has nothing to do with a conviction. But there wasn't even probable cause to arrest. I see two drunk people who had a rendezvous in a restroom with a bunch of conflicting stories as to how she got there and what happened. Heck, even her own stories conflict with one another. I don't see a bloody glove here. Ben didn't get off on a technicality or by some high highfalutin attorney's antics. He got off because there wasn't a shred of credible evidence to even bring the guy in for questioning. Perhaps you could point to just one piece of evidence that shows Ben probably raped her. The cops couldn't seem to find one.

The Constant Gardener said...

Aside from the part where she said no?

Jon said...

Aside from the part where Ben said they didn't have sex and there was no DNA evidence to show that they did.

Jon said...

Or, how about the part where she said she wasn't raped? Then later in the ER she was "kinda raped" then the next day she was raped. which story is it? I don't know but apparently you do?

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

There wasn't "no DNA evidence", there just wasn't enough to get a conviction. The club's employees had also impeached the scene by bleaching the bathroom soon afterwards.

I also think that exposing himself, lying to the police, and his guards forbidding her friends from entering may have also been damning.

Jon said...

According to Ceryl Wecht there is no such thing as not enough DNA. He said there is DNA or there isn't. To put that in context though Mr. Wecht thinks that the statement from the DA about not enough DNA points to a cover up an not Ben's innocence.

The Constant Gardener said...

It's in the reports that she said no. By definition, lack of consent means sexual assault.

She was also obviously under a lot of pressure to not pursue the charges, and without her help the police couldn't build a case-- on top of the fact that the local yokels allowed the bathroom to be completely cleaned and the security tapes to be erased before the GBI could intervene. But apparently you were there and you know that anything that happened was completely above board. I mean, why else would off-duty cops have to guard the door?

Jon said...

When did he lie to the police?

tittg said...

I disagree that this was not the "easy way" for the Steelers. They're reputation has been badly tarnished by Ben's very public and very negative incidents of the past 18 months. There is no way they could have simply "looked the other way," not with their accountability to fans and ticket-holders. Whether or not it comes from a genuine place, shopping him is lip-service to public sentiment. If they don't trade him, they can say, "he's a scumbag - we tried to get rid of him."

The tough thing would have been for the Steelers to begin the process of rebuilding Ben's reputation as a player and as a marketable figure. Trading him (or trying to trade him) is way easier than that.

Koz said...

Maybe it's just because I live here, but I immediately thought of the Duke lacrosse case when all the press conferences were coming out from the Milledgeville DA. I think the Durham DA bungled that so poorly that the Milledgeville DA realized he had no solid evidence to try a case and didn't want to ruin his career over it. There was no reason to try a crime he knew he couldn't get a conviction for. As he said, his job is to enforce the law, not sin.

However, The Commish is free to suspend based on sin at his discretion.

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

Ben lied when he said they didn't have sex and he lied when he she fell and hit her head.

I guess he gives new meaning to rock out with your cock out?

Jon said...

It's in the report that she was actually under a lot of pressure to pursue the charges as reported by the investigating officer. It says in the report that Ben says they fooled around and then she fell down in her drunkenness at which point Ben told her to leave. Ben said they did not have sex. Which by definition means no sexual assault.

Look, I don't know what happened. But then again I'm not the one trying to run him out of town or accusing him of rape now am I? Her story is just as shaky as his. My first comment on this thread was asking not to assume anything and all you have done is rattle off your assumptions with a few citations of the report. But, it works both ways, the report also shows that it is just as possible that no one as sexually assaulted which is why Ben was not charged or arrested.

Corey said...

Jon,

no one has yet to deny that he locked himself in a girl's bathroom with a drunk girl while police officers/body guards protected the door until he was finished

there WAS enough DNA and then there WASN'T

he DID NOT have intercourse with her and then he DID have intercourse with her

ben's lawyer said he would be open to an interview and DNA sample and then he wasn't available for either

there was very little conflict between her two statements - i'd be interested in where you see the conflicts

their would have been an indictment if the accuser wanted to continue to pursue charges, but she lost interest...wonder why? lawyer threats? personal check perhaps?

Jon said...

How on earth do you know that's a lie? Why is it alright to assume Ben is lying but not the girl who changed her story several times.

Jon said...

When the officer on the spot said "I need to talk to the alleged victim, not [the sorority sisters]," he asked the accuser if Roethlisberger had raped her. She said: "No."

When asked if the two had sex, she said "well, I'm not sure."

That is from the DA's presser. Would you like the links?

Fightingscot82 said...

You will know how much truth there is to the story when Ben and/or the players union reacts to the suspension. If the union accepts this without question, that would pretty much say he did something terribly wrong.

We do know they had sex in the bathroom. Let's just say the sex was consensual and they were caught and cited - would that warrant this suspension? Maybe. The problem is that he wasn't charged with anything. Based on the facts there, sex in a bar bathroom is illegal, and despite the absence of charges, he is punished for whatever immoral stuff he did.

I think its unstated that he did something illegal and it was instantly clear there wasn't enough evidence to convict, and OJ taught us you need 100% damning evidence to go after a celebrity, so the DA gave up.

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

Hey Ben, stop posing as this Jon fellow and tell us what really happened?

RickM said...

"We do know they had sex in the bathroom"

Do we? How do we know that?

"Based on the facts there, sex in a bar bathroom is illegal"

No, sex is a public bathroom is illegal. By all accounts, this was a private bathroom.

"I think its unstated that he did something illegal and it was instantly clear there wasn't enough evidence to convict"

Have you even read anything that wasn't from the PG, AP or ESPN? Because there is no evidence from all the statements that were gathered that something illegal took place.

And comparing this to OJ is way out of line. In the OJ case you had a televised trial where the evidence was laid out for all to judge. In this case, the only thing that's been laid out by the national media is what was in the third report filed by the police.

Anyone who thinks this suspension was justified is a total f#@king idiot.

BURGH08 said...

If the union doesn't react, I wouldn't take that as any indication. Goodell's power is from the collective bargaining agreement with the owners and union. Agree or disagree, the commissioner believes the suspension is justified, and so do the Rooneys, and that's good enough for me.

If they trade him though under what has been made public, I think it's foolish.

I do think Jon has watched too many episodes of CSI though.

marybods said...

Jon, I couldn't agree with u more. Her storys r conflicting. If anything reading the police reports made me feel like this whole story is made up. Think about this...She gave first report--NO RAPE. Then she went home, a home she shares with the sorority girls she was out with. 12 hours later she and the sisters went to give statements. They had 12 hours to rehearsh (get the story straight). Of of a sudden--RAPE. The girls stated that they were not all in the same area of the bar, yet their storys r almost identical. How could this be?? The girls stated they did not know who Ben was, yet in the same staement they refered to his past alligations. How could this be, if they didn't know Ben????? One statement said that Ben singled her out at the begining of the night. How could this be??? THEY followed Ben all night. To me the police report makes me want to ask more questions then it solves. To me this story sounds made up. In order for this suspension to be fair, Goodell must suspend all NFL players who go to bars, buy women drinks and hit on them. Probaly wouldn't be enough players to make up one team, let alone a hole league!!!