Goodell, Players Coalition Members Hold Summit In New Orleans
Saints LB DEMARIO DAVIS and TE BENJAMIN WATSON, both members of the Players Coalition, spent yesterday with NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL and lawyers from the Orleans Public Defenders Office to engage with "leaders of several local groups involved in criminal justice reform," according to Heather Nolan of the New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE. Saints DE CAMERON JORDAN also "attended part of the day's discussions," along with Saints Owner GAYLE BENSON and President DENNIS LAUSCHA. The meeting was "part of the Players Coalition's 'Listen and Learn Tour,' which has taken place in several NFL cities in the last few months." Davis, Watson and Goodell were "engaged in every session and asked each panel different versions of the same question: 'What can we do to help?'" Goodell's presence was "noted and appreciated by the players." Watson: "It speaks volumes about his willingness to support players and see what we're hearing, learn what we're learning" (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 9/12). In Baton Rouge, Matt Sledge noted Goodell for eight hours "listened attentively -- sometimes interjecting questions -- as defense attorneys and formerly incarcerated people spoke." The symposium was "one of a series of similar events the Players Coalition has organized" in Detroit, Philadelphia and N.Y. The group has also "hosted seven forums ahead of elections for district attorney in other cities" (THEADVOCATE.com, 9/11).