Roger Goodell to Philly crowd: ‘Just one second, you can resume your booing’
For the second straight night, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (left) was booed loudly by the thousands gathered to watch the second night of the 2017 NFL draft.
Not even Ron Jaworski could save him.
Despite attempting to use the beloved former Eagles quarterback as a human shield, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell was booed heavily by the thousands gathered to watch the second night of the NFL Draft live on the Parkway.
Jaworski tried his best to encourage the crowd to applaud the embattled commissioner, but Goodell, realizing the gesture was futile, turned to Jaworski and said, “That’s all right, that’s all right.”
The booing didn’t appear to come as any great shock to Goodell, who was forced to endure an increasing amount of negative reactions throughout the first day of the draft. He even told the crowd, “Just one second, you can resume your booing.”
Of course, once Jaworski stepped behind the podium, the booing immediately shifted to loud cheering as the local football icon tried his best to convince fans to show Goodell something other than hatred.
“If you do the right thing, you win this city over,” Jaworski said. “Commissioner, you will eventually win this city over.”
It didn’t work. Once Goodell returned to the podium, the crowd’s cheers immediately returned to loud boos that reverberated across the Parkway.
Here’s what it sounded like at the event, captured by Billy Penn writer Dan Levy:
To be clear, this isn’t a case of Philadelphia fans behaving badly. Goodell receives a negative reaction from fans these days no matter where he shows up, including last year’s Super Bowl. It isn’t even an experience exclusive to Goodell — NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman hears it from hockey fans every year at the NHL draft.
To his credit, Goodell seemed to take the booing in stride, even encouraging fans to give it to him a little bit on the opening night of the draft. But as Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio notes, the owners can’t possibly think it’s a good look to have their commissioner booed at every single public appearance, including at the league’s biggest events.
“Efforts to laugh it off or playfully welcome more booing have legitimized it,” Florio writes. “The only way to end it is to keep the Commissioner out of sight, and to have people who will be embraced by the locals call out the picks.”