NFL Commissioner Goodell addresses scandal: ‘I made a mistake’

Posted at 12:57 PM, Sep 19, 2014
and last updated 2014-09-19 16:31:21-04

NEW YORK – NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell told reporters on Friday that he never considered resigning his post despite calls that he step down over his handling of the Ray Rice domestic abuse scandal and others.

He announced a sweeping domestic abuse and sexual assault policy for the league’s 32 teams, mandating all players and staff undergo education and training about how to prevent abuse.

The training and education sessions will begin within the next month, he said Friday.

The announcement follows a number of high-profile cases involving football players, including the release of a video that shows the Baltimore Ravens’ Ray Rice punching his then-fiancee.

Goodell said he “got it wrong” in his handling of the Rice domestic abuse scandal but vowed, “We will get our house in order.”

He said the account that Ray Rice provided about an assault in an elevator involving his then-fiancee was different than what was depicted in a video of the incident made public.

“I’m telling you right now, it’s inconsistent with what he told us,” he said.

Goodell declined to comment further, saying Rice’s indefinite suspension is under appeal by the NFL players union.

He also addressed a player accused of child abuse, Minnesota Viking Adrian Peterson.

“While I am disappointed in what Adrian Peterson was involved with, we want to see the facts,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell told reporters on Friday. “What we have to do is allow those facts to succeed.”

Peterson, a running back with the Minnesota Vikings, has been charged in the alleged child abuse of his 4-year-old son.

The commissioner also said that as part of its new policy, the league has entered into an agreement to support the National Domestic Violence Hotline and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.

“They need our help and we are providing it,” he said.

Goodell also said that each of the league’s 32 teams have received a list of agencies within their communities that address these issues.

Near the end of the conference, an unidentified man interrupted Goodell and was removed from the room.

He screamed, “Don’t take me to an elevator!”