NFL owners are reportedly ready to oust NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell if an investigation shows that he lied about having not seen the video tape of Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancee Janay Palmer before Monday.
Goodell has insisted that the league did not see the tape before Monday, but the Associated Press reported that an NFL executive received a copy of the video in April. Goodell also falsely claimed that it would have been illegal for the casino to provide the tape to the NFL.
Former FBI director Robert Mueller, who works at Wilmer Hale, the law firm that helped the NFL negotiate its “mutli-billion-dollar contract with DirecTV, was tapped the lead the investigation along with the Giants owner John Mara and Steelers owner Art Rooney II.
According to the Washington Post, three owners indicated that they would be willing to remove Goodell if he lied about having not seen the video. One team official told the outlet that Goodell “would be [held] accountable for intentionally misleading people and taking actions to cover his tracks.”
“Certainly that would be grounds for anything from a reprimand to termination. [But] it would take a lot. No one expects it to come to that,” an executive reportedly said.
According to the Post, the executive believed that “owners would have little choice but to consider firing Goodell if Mueller’s report concludes that Goodell acted improperly in a significant way.”
“The integrity of the league would have to be protected at a certain point,” the executive said. “The trust of the public would have to be maintained. But, again, that’s not the expectation here.”
Other league sources have reportedly indicated that Goodell would “NEVER” resign and would probably have to be forced out.