- Every year football fans boo commissioner Roger Goodell at the start of the NFL Draft.
- This year, Goodell and the league are taking measure in an apparent attempt to quell the hate, sending Goodell to the stage accompanied by some Dallas Cowboys legends.
- The move comes in front of a Dallas crowd that may be even more anti-Goodell than other cities in years past due to the commissioner’s involvement in the suspension of running back Ezekiel Elliott.
Booing NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is something of a tradition at the NFL Draft.
But this year, Goodell will have some company as he takes the stage at AT&T Stadium, with Dallas Cowboys greats Roger Staubach, Troy Aikman, and Jason Witten walking by his side to introduce the draft, according to ESPN.
The move reads as something of an attempt to appease what is sure to be an especially Goodell-averse crowd as many Cowboys fans still hold a grudge against the commissioner for his handling of the suspension of star running back Ezekiel Elliott.
It’s a bold move to be sure, as booing of Goodell has become one of the defining moments at the start of the draft – Goodell himself has even leaned into the moment in the past, including last year, when he encouraged a boisterous crowd gathered outside the Philadelphia Art Museum steps to continue their jeers as he walked to the microphone.
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) April 28, 2017
Staubach expressed a belief that the plan would work, saying “I’m sure he’s going to get a good response with us being out there. If they boo, all of us are in trouble.”
While his confidence is surely welcome, it may be foolhardy – few things unify football fans more than a chance to boo their sport’s commissioner. We’ll see how the scene plays out tonight, when the first round of the NFL Draft kicks off.
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