As NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell served what many believe is the harshest penalty in NFL history, it does seem a bit over the top, and unnecessary, but in this time where the long-term health and well-being of the players is the primary concern for Commissioner Goodell. The year-long suspension of Saints Head Coach Sean Payton is a little overboard, but it is a sign that Commissioner Goodell will not tolerate this type of misconduct in the league, misconduct that is counterproductive to what he is trying to do for the league.
Commissioner Goodell has already taken multiple steps to improve player safety, many of the moves unpopular, such as having kickoffs from the 35 yard-line rather than the 30. To fans of the league, the suspension of Payton can be chalked up as another unpopular move by Goodell, but it does not come unwarranted. While this may not be the first “hit list” of its kind, it is the first one to be publicly noted, and fall into a scandal; Goodell wants to make an example out of the Saints, and want to show to everybody involved in the league that a bounty system will not be tolerated.
What does this mean for the Houston Texans? Well, nothing specifically, but in general, it could mean that the successful “Bulls on Parade” defense might go under a close watch by league officials for dirty play. A “Keeping them honest” mentality all around, and if the Texans defensive coaching staff have no skeletons in their closets, they should have no worries and keep playing their fair, tough, honest football that their fans have grown accustomed to seeing.
– Richard Perez