NFL commissioner Roger Goodell vowed today that if an NFL work stoppage is avoided, he will continue paying himself a salary far beyond that which someone of his talents and achievements deserves.
Goodell, who makes more than $10 million a year as commissioner, also stated that he will slash his salary to $1 if there is a work stoppage. "But that's obviously just a symbolic gesture," said the commissioner. "It's not like I'll notice it much because I have made a fortune doing this job. Seriously, I am loaded."
With his massive compensation package, Goodell makes more than only a handful of NFL stars — a fact he feels is more than deserved.
"I may not fill seats and sell jerseys like our players do," he said. "No one buys tickets or turns on the TV for me. But I move the needle. The vast majority of fans hate me and think I am absolutely terrible at my job. I get people talking. That kind of publicity is invaluable."
Goodell also said he does a lot of behind-the-scenes work that doesn't get noticed.
"I go to NFL games almost every week," he said. "And not always just to cool cities with good teams. I've been to Jacksonville. Twice. Also, I oversaw the billion dollar TV negotiations. I didn't leave the room once while the networks bid against each other."
NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith said Goodell's salary is one of the many things that needs to be on the table.
"We have legit superstars out there every Sunday risking their bodies for far less money than this guy is taking in," said Smith. "For example, the fact that Roger Goodell makes nearly three times what Troy Polamalu does is beyond absurd."
But in a gesture he states shows his good faith attempt to prevent a lockout, Goodell says he is open to restructuring his salary.
"Well, as I stated earlier, I already got incredibly wealthy off of this job," said Goodell. "I mean, nine figures a year! For what I do! It's great. And, secondly, I'd be very open to a performance-based income. For example, maybe I get a base salary of, like, $9 million and then I also pull in 20-percent on all the fines I levy. I would definitely be up for something like that."