THE BLOG
03/04/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Is Congressman Jim Moran Inappropriately Interfering in NFL Union Chief Election?

New York Times columnist, William C. Rhoden, Sports Business Journal and football website, profootballtalk.com have exposed facts that, if true, point to one Democrat from Virginia who isn't as busy as he should be with figuring out the TARP problems that are engulfing the nation's financial sector.

Instead, Congressman Jim Moran has decided it is time to poke his head into the on-going saga of who will succeed the late Gene Upshaw as the Executive Director of the NFL Players' Association (NFLPA). And the intrusion seems to have the ring of self-interest that the public finds distasteful.

The final cut of candidates includes Troy Vincent and Trace Armstrong who are considered the front-runners among five men.

Both are veterans of more than a decade and a half in the league and each at one time served as the president of the NFLPA. The search has been on-going for months. Upshaw passed away in August 2008.

Profootballtalk.com reported earlier this week that they believed there would be attempts to discredit Vincent. Friday that news was broken bySports Business Journal.

In Tampa at the Super Bowl, an informal poll among veterans on the Steelers and Cardinals resulted in Vincent being the one most chosen if the race was narrowed to him and Armstrong.

But Vincent had been on the opposite side of some issues from Upshaw and shook up some of the current management at the NFLPA. Armstrong is considered a more "stay the course" type candidate, having a resume that includes working at entertainment and sports agency, CAA with Tom Condon, Upshaw's agent.

A winner will be chosen in March after a vote of a majority of the union representatives from each NFL team. By that time the group of candidates will have been narrowed down to three.

Now, the candidacy of Vincent is in question. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, a letter signed by four members of Congress was sent earlier this month to the Department of Labor. It put into question the process of choosing Upshaw's successor by asking if all candidates besides Vincent had been properly vetted.

Profootballtalk.com said it was told this week by a member of the NFLPA Executive Committee that if any of the remaining candidates was found to have instigated the Congressional probe he would be removed from the process.

On Friday, Sports Business Journal wrote that Troy Vincent had met with at least two of the four Congress members who signed the letter to the Labor Department. The Journal's source is Representative Jim Moran (D) of Virginia.

He informed the Journal's reporters that he spoke with his four colleagues and two have admitted speaking to Vincent one of whom said he met with him. Sources told the same reporters that Vincent denied doing so during his interview with the interim- Executive Director of the NFLPA.

The plot thickens. Representative Moran's daughter, Mary serves as the NFLPA's director of human resources. If the current administration felt threatened by Vincent, the connection between Moran's outing of Vincent and his daughter's tenure at the union seems fishy at best and rotten at worst.

One of the members of Congress who signed the letter to the Department of Labor, Congressman Roger Meeks, a Democrat from Queens, New York, said on Friday that towards the end of his conversation with Rep. Moran he learned that Moran's daughter is employed as the NFLPA's Director of Human Resources. According to Rhoden's article in Friday's New York Times, Meeks said that "unspecified personal concerns" were expressed by Moran regarding his daughter's ability to continue in her job if Troy Vincent were elected.

I am no labor expert but isn't Rep, Moran taking an inappropriate interest in the business of the NFL player's union? Hey, I understand wanting to keep one's daughter employed but this just isn't right, is it?