On the heels of another offseason where it seems like there was just as much news off the field about players as there was on it, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent out the following to all teams about doing their very best to keep clean – or else.
“I want to use this opportunity to remind all NFL personnel — both players and non-players — that the prohibitions on alcohol-related misconduct, including DUI, apply to everyone,” Goodell wrote. “DUI is a serious matter which poses great risks to both those who drive under the influence, and innocent third parties. This truth was tragically underscored in Mr. Stallworth’s case. In the past few years, I have not hesitated to impose discipline, including suspensions, on club and league employees who have violated the law relating to alcohol use.
“Every club should advise its employees of their obligations and our commitment to hold people accountable for alcohol-related violations of law. Please ensure that your employees are aware of the resources available to them, including Safe Ride and similar programs. Let’s make sure that the 2009 season does not bring more tragedy or embarrassment to ourselves and our employees.”
Of course Stallworth’s case is very extreme since someone involved died, but make no mistake, Goodell does not play around with the reputation of the league, and wants to make it known to all teams that they had better keep their players in line, or they will feel his wrath.