Roger Goodell Biography

(6th Commissioner of the National Football League)

Birthday: February 19, 1959 (Pisces)

Born In: Jamestown, New York, United States

Roger Goodell is an American businessman who has been serving as the commissioner of the National Football League (NFL) since September 2006. He secured an internship with the league in 1982 through a letter-writing campaign. From there, he worked as an assistant in the public relations department before serving in various high-level positions under then-Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, who appointed him the NFL's Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in 2001. As the commissioner, he was instrumental in implementing a new NFL Personal Conduct Policy that resulted some of the harshest penalties in NFL history in the spygate scandal involving the New England Patriots, the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal, and the deflategate scandal involving New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. He brokered a settlement with the former NFL players over head injuries. He is often described as “the most powerful man in sports” by commentators.

9
Quick Facts

Also Known As: Roger Stokoe Goodell

Age: 63 Years, 63 Year Old Males

Family:

Spouse/Ex-: Jane Skinner (m. 1997)

father: Charles Goodell

mother: Jean Rice Goodell

siblings: Michael Goodell, Tim Goodell

Born Country: United States

Sportspersons Political Leaders

Notable Alumni: Washington & Jefferson College

City: Jamestown, New York

U.S. State: New Yorkers

More Facts

education: Washington & Jefferson College

Childhood & Early Life

Roger Stokoe Goodell was born on February 19, 1959 in Jamestown, New York, United States, as the third of five sons of U.S. Senator for New York Charles Goodell and his first wife Jean.

In 1971, the family moved to Bronxville, New York, where he attended Bronxville High School and was a three-sport star in football, basketball, and baseball, captaining all three teams as a senior.

He was recruited by several colleges to play football as a defensive back and attended Washington & Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania, but a knee injury in his freshman year ended his playing career.

He completed his graduation in 1981 with a degree in economics and received the school's Walter Hudson Baker Prize for excellence in economics.

Continue Reading Below
Career

Roger Goodell remembers sleeping with an NFL "Duke" football cradled in his arms at six and had decided in high school to work for NFL and hopefully someday become its commissioner. Upon completing his college graduation, he began a letter-writing campaign starting with then-Commissioner Pete Rozelle and wrote letters to each of the league’s then 28 teams.

In summer 1981, Rozelle instructed NFL Executive Director Don Weiss to interview Goodell, who was offered a three-month internship in the league's New York office. He joined office in September 1982, and his duties there included clipping newspaper articles.

In 1983, he worked for the New York Jets as an intern in public relations and administration, and in the following season, he was offered an assistant coaching job there. However, he turned down the position and returned to the league office as a public relations assistant in 1984.

In 1987, he was appointed assistant to the president of the American Football Conference, Lamar Hunt, by Commissioner Rozelle. After Paul Tagliabue became the commissioner, Goodell managed a wide array of football and business operations in senior executive roles during the 1990s.

In December 2001, he was named by Tagliabue the NFL's Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer and took responsibility for the league's football operations, apart from officiating and supervising league business functions. He also served as the president of NFL Ventures, which oversees the NFL's business units, including media properties, marketing and sales, stadium development, and strategic planning.

After Tagliabue announced that he will retire in 2006, he appointed a committee headed by Dan Rooney, owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, to initiate a substantive, wide ranging search for his successor. Goodell was one of five finalists contending to replace him and was leading his opponent Gregg Levy by 17-14 votes after the third ballot.

Following the fourth ballot, he was leading by 21–10 and was only one vote short of the necessary two-thirds majority, which he achieved after the fifth round as two owners shifted support towards him. He was chosen as Tagliabue’s successor on August 8, 2006 and assumed office on September 1, the date Tagliabue was required to step down.

In November 2006, addressing rumors that the NFL may expand outside of the United States, he stated that “I don't know if it will become a reality, but it is certainly a possibility”. He subsequently shut down the spring league NFL Europe, founded in 1995, after the 2007 season, and launched the new NFL International Series in October 2007.

In April 2007, he tackled the year-long NFL player conduct controversy regarding some players' actions off the field and announced a new NFL Personal Conduct Policy. Tennessee Titans cornerback Pacman Jones and Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Chris Henry were the first two players to be suspended under the new policy, followed by Chicago Bears defensive lineman Tank Johnson in June.

Continue Reading Below

On September 13, 2007, Goodell disciplined the New England Patriots and head coach Bill Belichick after New England attempted to videotape the defensive signals of the New York Jets from an illegal position. He fined Belichick the league maximum of $500,000, adding that he considered suspending him, and the Patriots $250,000 as well as the loss of their first round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft.

He played a crucial role in the negotiation of the collective bargaining agreement with the NFLPA and NFL owners during the summer of 2011. He was also involved in the league’s expansion and realignment, and stadium development, as well as the launch of the NFL Network and securing new television agreements.

In March 2012, Goodell revealed evidence that players and coaches on the New Orleans Saints had instituted a bounty program paying Saints defensive players for deliberately knocking opposing players out of games. He issued some of the harshest penalties in NFL, suspending for varying periods defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, who administered the program, head coach Sean Payton, general manager Mickey Loomis and assistant head coach Joe Vitt.

He received criticism after locking out the regular NFL game officials and opening the 2012 season with inexperienced replacement referees following dispute between the league and the NFL Referees Association regarding new collective bargaining agreement.

In August 2013, he helped reach a $765 million settlement with the former NFL players over head injuries and created a $675 million compensation fund to support former NFL players depending on their conditions.

He presided over suspended New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s appeal hearing in June 2015 and upheld his suspension for the latter’s alleged awareness of team employees deflating footballs.

The Manhattan federal court later overturned the suspension, not because of Brady’s innocence, rather because the NFL didn’t follow due process, but the suspension was reinstated by an appeals court citing overwhelming evidence of tampering.

In May 2018, Goodell and NFL owners approved a policy requiring players to stand during the national anthem or stay in the locker room after some protested against police brutality and racism by kneeling. Following renewed Black Lives Matter protests after the murder of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police, he apologized for the NFL's handling of previous protests and encouraged players to speak their minds freely.

Family & Personal Life

Roger Goodell has been married to former Fox News Channel anchor Jane Skinner since October 1997. He has twin daughters with her, born in 2001, and lives with his family in the New York area.

Trivia

Roger Goodell played a caricature of himself in the NFL 100 commercial before Super Bowl LIII in 2019.


Recommended Lists:

See the events in life of Roger Goodell in Chronological Order

How To Cite

Article Title
- Roger Goodell Biography
Author
- Editors, TheFamousPeople.com
Website
- TheFamousPeople.com
URL
https://www.thefamouspeople.com/profiles/roger-goodell-33847.php

People Also Viewed

Ron DeSantis
Ron DeSantis
(American)
 
Herschel Walker
Herschel Walker
(American)
 
Dwayne Johnson
Dwayne Johnson
(American)
 
Tom Brady
Tom Brady
(American)
 
Deion Sanders
Deion Sanders
(American)
 
LeBron James
LeBron James
(American)
 
Christian Pulisic
Christian Pulisic
(American)
 
Barack Obama
Barack Obama
(American)