The NFL has been having a rough month after being rocked first by the Ray Rice domestic assault case (and it’s embarrassingly awful punishment that literally only changed when their back was against a wall) and then by a string a subsequent abuse cases that have finally shown a light on the underside of the NFL, it’s protecting of players from actual justice all in the name of profit and status quo. While many sponsors, celebrities, and athletes have spoken out against the organization and pulled out of deals, the NFL seems to have gained (or at least not lost) a massive supporter in ESPN. ESPN has just suspended sports pundit Bill Simmons for three weeks over a profanity filled tirade against the NFL and, more specifically, Roger Goodell. ESPN claims that they suspended Simmons over comments he made about Goodell in a podcast when he called him a liar and said that the NFL knew the extent of Rice’s crime.
ESPN has a lot to lose if the NFL loses. They have a symbiotic relationship and feed off each other both during the on season as well as the off season. By suspending Simmons for telling the truth (it turns out both Goodell and the NFL had the full tapes and were, in fact, lying), ESPN has shown that it cares more about it’s relationship with the NFL and sports leagues over those who actually watch the channel and make it profitable. Even though Simmons did challenge ESPN to go after him and get him in trouble, ESPN should’ve realized that he was justly outraged over the sheer hypocrisy and lies that the NFL coldly rolled out to protect it’s reputation. And by suspending Simmons for being rightly furious, ESPN has shown that it values it’s relationship with the NFL and sponsors far more than it values the lives and bodies of the women who watch and love the channel.
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