About a year ago in a column, I called out ESPN radio host Mike Golic for his on-air suggestions that football is as safe as it's ever been and for his unwavering support of "Heads Up." Sunday morning, I called him out again.
ESPN reported this week that the NFL had pulled funding for concussion research because one of the principal researchers was Dr. Robert Stern of Boston University who has been critical of the NFL.
Having managed crises and public relations disasters for the past three decades, I can't help but see the headlines through a particular lens. Suffice it to say, as far as PR goes, 2015 did not disappoint.
Concussion fumbles when it delves too much into Dr. Omalu's life. This indictment of the NFL becomes a love story which takes the focus off the football players where the real pathos is. Concussion should have revealed more about the tragic lives these esteemed players led and their needless suffering due to sport.
Few things bring the country together during the year like football and Thanksgiving is no exception. For millions of families, watching football on Thanksgiving is as much a part of the day as turkey, stuffing, or sweet potato pie.
For the past several weeks I have seen a multitude of stories from the wild world of sport that have struck me as something about which I wanted to write and set my brain whirring.
Following a seven month debacle that has made the NFL nearly the laughing stock in professional sports, Judge Berman issued his ruling , tossing Tom Brady's four-game suspension for Deflate Gate and setting up the likely NFL appeal.
Good news: Ahmed Zayat, owner of American Pharoah, announced that his horse would not be retired and would finish the season at the Breeder's Cup running in the Classic.
The NFL never informed players that they risked suspension for tampering with equipment or not fully cooperating with a League-directed investigation. It never informed players that suspension could result from being "generally aware" of equipment tampering by other employees.
Anyone who thinks that a New York District judge's reversal of Tom Brady's suspension was a momentous victory for Brady and the New England Patriots, and, simultaneously, a crushing and humiliating blow to the NFL Commissioner, hasn't been paying attention.
With the NFL's intention to appeal, it appears this story is not over. Opposing fans will use Deflategate as an opportunity to heckle Brady and the Patriots whenever they play their teams.
Obviously, Judge Richard Berman is not a die-hard New York football fan or if he is, he was able to put that bias aside. Even if you despise Tom Brady, the overturning of his suspension was the right legal decision.
The purpose of this post is not to argue either side, so Patriots fans, please read the whole thing before you come looking for me.
This dispute has offered a "teachable moment" for the nation's football fans about methods of resolving employment disputes. Some may have actually learned the difference between arbitration and mediation.
In the Brady case, if the parties are not able to settle the matter, the Federal District Court in Manhattan will have to determine whether the Commissioner's decision was "arbitrary and capricious," not whether it "drew its essence from the collective bargaining agreement."
The success of the NFL derives in part from its mastery of the electronic media as the league is able to blanket that world at all times and places. There is no off-season for the NFL. On the rare occasion there can be drawbacks to this dominance. The last 72 hours is not what the media mavens at the NFL would call "a good run."