"I think the way Mr. Goodell has handled this ... he's kind of using his power, as kind of like a Gestapo-type situation, controlling the players, not letting the judicial system do its work. It's just way too much power for one person to have, and a lot of players take real issue with the way he's using this power."
When Toomer realized he compared Goodell's commissionership to Nazi Germany's violent and unforgiving police force, he rushed to rectify his statement in an email to Newsday:
"I know most of you have seen or heard my comments from yesterday about Commissioner Goodell. Some of you have probably already, rightfully, taken me to task for my remarks. I want to offer this apology. Obviously I didn't fully understand the meaning of what I said. I do now. It was a stupid, inappropriate and offensive thing to say. I apologize for my choice of words, and I apologize to Commissioner Goodell for the offensive characterization. Sincerely, Amani Toomer.”
Personally, the players are way off base with their assessment of Goodell. He has a job to do and - in my opinion - he is doing it well. Goodell is great ambassador of the game and balances the needs of fans, players and owners with a fair and furtive hand.
Players who criticize Goodell should take a step back and thank him for his perserverance and insight as well as his resolute stewardship of this burgeoning enterprise, which continues to grow exponentially in one of the worst economic climates in world history.
Secondly, if Goodell wielded the power these players believe he possesses, there would be no lockout. Get over it.
Amani, you graduated from Michigan - we're glad you regrouped to see the forest through the trees, here...
thanks to Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN New York for the quotations