Troy Vincent Says NFL Planning For Full Stadiums When Season Begins
NFL Exec VP/Football Operations Troy Vincent said that the league is "planning for full stadiums when the season begins," according to Jeff Kerr of CBSSPORTS.com. Vincent on Friday during an appearance on DC-based WTEM-AM's "The Brian Mitchell Show" said, "We are planning to have full stadiums until the medical community tells us otherwise. Now remember when we're talking -- we're talking about August, September. So there's a lot that can happen here. So we're planning for full stadiums." He added, "We also know that we have to plan for half stadiums. Three-quarters. So we're planning for all of these different scenarios. But first and foremost, we're making every effort, working with the medical community, if we can have those stadiums with all people until they tell us otherwise when that time comes, that's our plan. That's our plan of action" (CBSSPORTS.com, 5/24). Dolphins Owner Stephen Ross this morning said he thinks "definitely there will be a football season this year," but the "real question is will there be fans in the stadiums." Ross: "I think right now today we’re planning on having fans in the stadiums, but I think the NFL is looking at and is very flexible so that we will be able to start on time" (“Squawk Box,” CNBC, 5/26).
GETTING COMPLACENT? The NFL recently enacted several changes to the Rooney Rule, and Vincent said that there was a "point during one of the NFL's recent internal diversity meetings when he realized how far the league was from true inclusion." NBCSPORTS.com's Peter King wondered, "How did the NFL get to the point where only six of 64 top football people in the sport -- the 32 head coaches and 32 GMs -- are minorities?" The "simple answer" is that the NFL "got comfortable." The league "trusted owners to do the right thing, year after year." The NFL "worked diligently when the Rooney Rule was adopted" in '03. Vincent: "How can we create an atmosphere where the first time someone is meeting Anthony Lynn is NOT doing a formal interview? (NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell) has pushed us in this particular area -- creating as many of those touchpoint opportunities as we can. Critical. Super critical. And we have not. We have not done that" (NBCSPORTS.com, 5/25). WFAN’s Boomer Esiason said the “most important thing that has come out of this discussion is the fact that now all assistant coaches will be available for interviews if teams want them" (“Boomer and Gio,” CBSSN, 5/26).