Nicole Roman, Account Executive

After being named NFL Commissioner in 2006, Roger Goodell’s actions created a reputation that he was “the enforcer” of the world’s largest and most valuable sports franchise. He accepted no excuses and no nonsense when it came to player safety and the conduct of league athletes on and off the field.  That is why the stunningly quizzical and unclear messaging around his office’s handling of domestic violence has caught the attention of the media, elected officials, the players’ union and general public. The NFL is one of the most image-conscious organizations in existence, how could they err so badly?

As calls build for his removal and the drip-drip-drip of conflicting stories continue, the Commissioner is going to be backed further and further into the ‘redzone’ of reputational management. The once feared ‘enforcer’ is now on the defensive, burning through the capital he’s built over the years and no one is giving him the benefit of the doubt.

With a salary reportedly that of an NFL superstar, $44 million according to one report, the league’s fans, owners and players deserve straight answers from the Office of the Commissioner.  It’s time for him to accept responsibility and vow to learn from this experience.  It’s time for some straight answers.

It looks like it might be time for Goodell to avoid any further interviews and start developing some clear reasoning and messaging to communicate to the media and community.

Rule number one: the cover-up always gets you.