The Latest: Goodell says league 'won’t tolerate racism'

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says the league will deal with discrimination in a serious way if he finds that teams violated that principle

ByThe Associated Press
February 09, 2022, 3:47 PM
The Vince Lombardi Trophy is seen before NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell addresses the media at a news conference Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
The Vince Lombardi Trophy is seen before NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell addresses the media at a news conference Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
The Associated Press

INGLEWOOD, Calif. -- The Latest on NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s news conference (all times PST):

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12:45 p.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says the league will deal with discrimination in a serious way if he finds that teams violated that principle.

Goodell says “we won’t tolerate racism. We won't tolerate discrimination.”

Goodell says the league will look to see if any policies need to be modified after another offseason where the number of minority coaches has not increased.

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12:45 p.m.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell defended the league using an oral report from an outside investigator into the then-Washington Football Club.

Goodell did not answer the question on whether results of the new investigation into the Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder will be released in a written report.

The commissioner says the oral report was used to make sure anyone who wanted to protect the identity of anyone who wanted to speak to investigators privately. Goodell says the “vast majority” of people took part in the investigation knowing their names would not be released publicly. He says those willing to go public testified last week at Congress.

Goodell says the NFL accepted all of the investigator’s recommendations in the oral report along with a system of checks to ensure that Washington follows through with changes.

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12:45 p.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says he “bares responsibility” for the league’s struggles in improving diversity in coaching and other high-ranking positions on teams and in the league.

Goodell says that as a league there is no subject that has been “discussed more frequently” over the past five years other then increasing diversity.

Goodell says the league needs to make sure “we’re doing everything we possibly can to be more successful.”

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12:40 p.m.

Commissioner Roger Goodell says personal conduct applies to everyone in the NFL and that the league has people making bad decisions in other markets.

New Orleans running back Alvin Kamara was arrested after the Pro Bowl in Las Vegas last weekend, and the Las Vegas Raiders also have had a couple of incidents with players this past season.

Goodell says the NFL’s security team was contacted by police in Las Vegas just before the Pro Bowl. Police told the security team they wanted to meet with Kamara after the game. Goodell says the security team made sure that happened, doing what police asked of them.

Kamara now is out of jail after he was arrested over the weekend on a felony charge alleging he beat and injured a person at a Las Vegas nightclub.

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12:35 p.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says he and other league officials have met with media mogul Byron Allen about his interest in buying the Denver Broncos and bringing diversity to ownership.

The NFL has no majority Black owners and only two minority owners with Shad Khan in Jacksonville and Kim Pegula, who owns the Bills along with her husband.

Goodell says there are other minority candidates interested in buying teams.

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12:35 p.m.

Roger Goodell says the integrity of the game obviously is an important key for the NFL as much as making sure the league has the right culture.

The commissioner says the NFL will look into former Miami coach Brian Flores’ allegation in his lawsuit alleging racism in the league and that Dolphins owner Stephen Ross offered him $100,000 per game to lose in 2019 to help the team’s draft status. Goodell says any violations will not be tolerated. He refused to speculate and wants to know the facts. But Goodell says they’ll deal with any such issues very seriously.

Asked if an owner could be forced to sell a team, Goodell says he believes the league’s individual club owners do have the authority to remove an owner from the NFL.

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12:30 p.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says the league is “not doing a good enough job” in terms of increasing diversity at high-ranking positions on teams and in the league.

Goodell says the league believes in “diversity as a value” and has made the league stronger. Goodell says the league will look to find other ways to improve the policies and procedures and determine what can be done to make sure teams and the league are “attracting the best talent.”

The league has been under fire following a lawsuit alleging racism in hiring from former Miami coach Brian Flores.

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12:30 p.m.

Commissioner Roger Goodell says the NFL needs to understand what happened in connection with the alleged sexual harassment by Washington Commanders owner Daniel Snyder.

The NFL announced hours after Washington said the team had hired an outside investigator to look into allegations by former team employee Tiffani Johnston. She told Congress that Snyder groped her thigh at a team dinner and pushed her toward his limousine with his hand on her lower back years ago.

Goodell says the investigation will treat this in the most serious way to preserve the type of culture they want in the NFL. He says he doesn’t see anyway that a team can investigate itself and that the league will use an outside expert. He says they will treat this seriously and move forward.

The commissioner also was asked if Snyder tried to block any details from being released from an earlier investigation into Washington. Goodell says he couldn’t explain the legal agreement, but that he didn’t interfere with anything the NFL did with the investigation and outcome.

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12:25 p.m.

The NFL will play a regular-season game in Munich, Germany, next season.

Commissioner Roger Goodell made the announcement during his annual Super Bowl news conference.

The league has expanded its horizon in Europe after years of only playing games that count in England. The 2022 game will be part of a four-game series played abroad that also will include games in London.

The league will play an additional game in Munich and two in Frankfurt over the next four seasons.

Participating teams will be revealed when the schedule is released in the spring.

Goodell also says the league will return to Mexico City next season.

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12:20 p.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says it’s “surreal” to be back in Los Angeles for a Super Bowl for the first time in 29 years after years with no team in the country’s second-largest market.

The NFL returned to Los Angeles in 2016 and SoFi Stadium opened last season as the home to the Rams and Chargers. Goodell says he believes Los Angeles will be a “regular Super Bowl stop” because of the state-of-the-art stadium.

The next three Super Bowls will be played in Arizona, Las Vegas and New Orleans with the game in February 2026 the next one available.

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12:15 p.m.

Commissioner Roger Goodell says the NFL can’t draw any conclusions yet on whether the interview process itself is flawed in trying to increase the number of minority coaches in the league.

Goodell says the NFL shouldn’t draw any conclusions without looking at the process first. He says he doesn’t think they can take anything off the table. But he says if there is something flawed with the process the league needs to know how to fix that.

The commissioner noted the NFL created a database providing owners with information on a variety of candidates. He says the NFL has looked at the process. He says he isn’t taking anything off the table and he believes outside experts can be very helpful to the league.

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12:10 p.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell says he’s frustrated that the league is still facing questions about diversity in hiring of coaches and executives despite efforts to improve.

Goodell says the league “fell short” in terms of increasing the number of minority head coaches this offseason with the league still having only five minority coaches after two were fired and two were hired this offseason.

Goodell says the league will bring in experts to look at the Rooney Rule and other policies to see what the league can do to increase minority hiring.

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11:40 a.m.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is getting ready to hold his annual Super Bowl news conference with the NFL facing questions about diversity in coaching and the treatment of women.

The league is facing a lawsuit from former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores who has alleged racist hiring practices for coaches and general managers and says the league remains “rife with racism” even as it publicly condemns it.

The NFL still has only five minority coaches following the latest hiring season.

The league has also taken over an investigation into alleged sexual harassment by Washington Commanders owner Daniel Snyder, saying the league, not the team, will hire an investigator to lead the probe.

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More AP Super Bowl coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/super-bowl and https://twitter.com/AP—NFL

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