(AP) Goodell: No expanded playoffs for 2013
By BARRY WILNER
AP Pro Football Writer
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the playoffs will not expand this season, but it will be discussed for the future. Last December, Goodell spoke about adding two or four teams to the current 12-team format.
The Baltimore Ravens’ reward for winning the Super Bowl might be a road trip.
Traditionally, the NFL champions kick off the next season by hosting a Thursday night game. Baltimore earned that privilege with its 34-31 victory over San Francisco last month.
Problem is, the guys next door, baseball’s Orioles, are scheduled for a night game on Sept. 5, when the NFL would open its schedule in Baltimore. Camden Yards shares parking lots with the Ravens’ home stadium.
Unless the Ravens and the NFL can get the Orioles to run a reverse and move the game to the afternoon or to another day–without violating any Major League Baseball rules–Joe Flacco & Co. could open on the road.
Not something Roger Goodell wants to see. The NFL commissioner twice has spoken with his MLB counterpart, Bud Selig, seeking a solution.
So far, there’s been no progress in talks, and Sept. 4 is not an option because it’s the first night of Rosh Hashanah.
The Orioles are scheduled to play the Indians in Cleveland on Sept. 4 at 7:05 p.m. and then open a series at home against the White Sox on Sept. 5 at 7:05 p.m.
Under baseball’s collective bargaining agreement, getaway games shall not be scheduled or rescheduled to start later than 5 p.m. if either club is required to travel for a day game, scheduled the next day, between cities in which the in-flight time is more than 1 1/2 hours.
The rule can be waived by a vote by the players on the team it affects, in this case the Orioles.
Last year, the NFL moved the opener to a Wednesday night to avoid conflicting with President Barack Obama’s acceptance speech at the Democratic Convention.
Goodell also said the playoffs will not expand this season, but it will be discussed for the future. Last December, Goodell spoke about adding two or four teams to the current 12-team format.
Surrounded by six Pro Football Hall of Famers at a news conference, Goodell and Jim Brown announced that the league will pay $42 million as part of a settlement with a group of retired players who sued over the use of their names and images without their consent.
Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson, a former NFL receiver, said the agreement was “better late than never.”
Moments later, Goodell came down hard on teams that consider asking questions about a player’s sexual orientation at the scouting combine.
Michigan quarterback-turned-receiver Denard Robinson, Colorado tight end Nick Kasa and Michigan State running back Le’Veon Bell indicated they were asked about it last month in Indianapolis.
Goodell also dismissed the notion that problems caused by the third-quarter blackout during the Super Bowl will damage New Orleans’ chances of hosting the game again. The league believes New Orleans authorities discovered the source of the problem that caused a 32-minute delay.
-Said there will be no change to the $36 million salary cap reduction the Washington Redskins were hit with in 2012; $18 million last year and $18 this year. Redskins general manager Bruce Allen recently called the penalty “a travesty of fairness.”
-Admitted there was improved effort in the players’ performance at the Pro Bowl and there will be further discussions here on its future.
-Reiterated the league’s desire to place a franchise in Los Angeles. He even thought Philip Anschutz’s decision not to sell AEG, which has interest in building a stadium downtown, is “very positive.”
-The NFL also approved terms and conditions for the new lease and renovation of the Buffalo Bills’ stadium.
-Said the league is expanding a relationship with Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
Breitbart Sports contributed to this report.