Sunday, July 19, 2009

Jolly Follow-Up

A couple weeks back, I pondered the effect of Goodell's personal conduct suspensions on the criminal process. Last week Bedard---through a "person familiar with the case"---confirmed that Jolly refuses to negotiate with the prosecutors specifically because he wishes to avoid a suspension from Goodell The Populist Avenger.

This is a lose-lose-lose. Even if he beats the charge, Jolly will have wasted tens of thousands of dollars defending himself. I'm positive that given the shaky state of their case, the prosecution would leap at a chance to save face and let Jolly plead guilty to a lesser offense. If this ridiculous case actually goes to trial the biggest losers of all will be the taxpayers.

At the same time, given what is at stake, I cannot fault Jolly for fighting the charge.

However, there has got to be a better, more transparent, and more predictable way of handing out punishment than Roger Goodell doling out suspensions commensurate with his understanding of a player's "remorse."

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