NFL commissioner Roger Goodell visited Jacksonville yesterday, and delivered one of those veiled threats that only sports league execs can do so well:
“We want the team to be successful and we want it to be here. We just want it to play in front of sold-out audiences.” …
Goodell was asked if sellouts this season would keep the team in Jacksonville.
“I think this team is going to continue to be successful here,” he said in response.
You think before you can become a commissioner, you have to go to protection racket school?
Meanwhile, the Jacksonville city council seems prepared to give the Jaguars an additional lease break, on top of the $4 million kickback they’re getting on their naming-rights deal. The new provision, which has been approved by two committees but hasn’t yet gone before the full council, would allow the team to pay for stadium maintenance in advance and then reimburse themselves from a pool of city money. It’s being sold as a way to allow the Jaguars to pay for costs as they arise and not when the city budget is ready, and it may be — but it also leaves open worries about the city having to reimburse the team for costs it didn’t approve or even know about beforehand.