I am going to try and write this as unbiased as possible despite the fact I am a die-hard Patriots fan.
Do I think NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is purposely avoiding making the trip to Foxboro? Yes I absolutely do!
Do I blame him? Nope! If I was in his position, I probably would be apprehensive to come to a place filled with hatred and animosity, but he did that to himself.
Do I agree with his choice? No.
Goodell did this to himself by suspending Tom Brady for the first four games of the 2016 season due to the “deflategate” incident. He made it very clear that he felt the suspension was warranted
The biggest issue I have is the fact that he is returning to Atlanta for the second week in a row, which makes it extremely obvious that he is purposely avoiding New England. He is the commissioner of all 32 National Football League teams, including the New England Patriots. He shouldn’t favor any team over another. It is not professional and it makes people question if Goodell is fit for his job.
Now of course this is all speculation. We will never know for sure if he is purposely avoiding New England or if it is all just a big coincidence. Now the latter seems far-fetched at this point, but it still isn’t out of the question.
After going through two different appeals, the suspension was upheld and Brady decided he was just going to take the punishment and move on.
Patriots fans don’t forget stuff like that, but honestly, I feel like the suspension ended up benefitting the Patriots in the end. We went 3-1 without Brady, and when Brady came back he was well-rested and ready to dominate the league (which he did).
In the end, none of this really matters. Goodell attending the Sunday evening matchup with the Steelers will have no impact on the game whatsoever. I just think it comes down to being fair and approaching Goodell’s duties as commissioner with a little more impartialness. Don’t deliberately avoid coming to a city just because you aren’t wanted there. I think that is ridiculous.
Austin Sanidas can be contacted at Asanidas@kscequinox.com