Apologetic Goldson awaits word from NFL


Apologetic Goldson awaits word from NFL

SANTA CLARA -- By early Monday afternoon, Dashon Goldson had yet to see a FedEx envelope in his locker telling him if he has been suspended or fined by the league for fighting with Arizona receiver Early Doucet in the 49ers' win over the Cardinals.

Goldson is not expected to be suspended for any upcoming games. Suspensions after in-game ejections are rare. But Goldson can expect to be informed in the coming days of a hefty fine.
As Goldson sat on the ground in the backfield on the play in which rookie Aldon Smith sacked quarterback Richard Bartel, Doucet came up from behind and took a swipe at Goldson. Goldson got up and retaliated by throwing a few punches. Players from both teams separated the two. Only Goldson was penalized and ejected.

Goldson apologized to his teammates, coaches and the team's ownership after the game and left without talking to reporters. But Monday, he addressed what happened from in front of his locker before the players reported to meetings to prepare for Thursday night's game in Baltimore."What happened was, he was running his route and kind of ran into each other and we both fell," Goldson explained. "I'm looking around to see if the refs saw anything and all I felt was two punches to the head, and I got up and retaliated. It wasn't a smart thing. It wasn't a smart decision on my behalf, but I kind of lost it. And that's something I can't do as a vet and as a leader on this team."After the game, Doucet told reporters Goldson took a cheap shot at him knocking him to the ground -- something Goldson refuted."I kind of figured that he might of felt that way, but it wasn't a cheap shot," Goldson said. "He was running his route and I was trying to cut back and we both fell. So, he retaliated and I did too."In a typical week, players who face disciplinary action from the league will see the orange-and-blue packet sometime around midweek. Goldson says he does not know when to expect something with the 49ers on a shortened timeline. He said he will accept his punishment. But his head coach says the situation needs more attention by the officials, specifically for any player who initiates a conflict."Dashon was punched in the back of the head and then retaliated. What I think needs to be addressed is this mindset that you can't retaliate," Jim Harbaugh said at his weekly Monday press conference. "Obviously, they're not going to see the first one. It's always the second guy that gets caught. And that's the one that's going to get flagged."Had Dashon not thrown the punch, then what we would be saying was, there would have been no flag, there would have been no fine, we would have moved on to the next play. But the first one needs to get addressed. It needs to be officiated and that needs to be a foul. Otherwise, and you wonder if people do it, as soon as the whistle's blown, 'Hey, get the first shot in.' The mindset is, it doesn't matter the first one, it's the second one. So turn your back get the first shove in or the first punch in and then turn your back and see if you can't get a 15-yard penalty. I'm sure that's not what anyone wants who watches football is even associated with the game of football, but you do see it. Not just at the pro level, but at the college level and down to the high school level."

Roger Goodell: 'What we are trying to stay out of is politics'


Roger Goodell: 'What we are trying to stay out of is politics'

NEW YORK — The NFL is not changing its national anthem policy to require players to stand during the national anthem.

Commissioner Roger Goodell and several owners said Wednesday at the league’s fall meetings that altering the language from “should stand” to “must stand” was not discussed.

New York Giants owner John Mara noted that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones “spoke at length” to the other owners about the anthem issue. Jones has said any Dallas player who doesn’t stand for “The Star-Spangled Banner” would not be playing.

Goodell reiterated that the league and its 32 clubs “believe everyone should stand for the national anthem. It’s an important part of our policy and the game. It’s important to honor our flag and our country and I think our fans expect that.”

Asked about any owners who threatened discipline for players who didn’t stand, Goodell said the owners didn’t discuss it.

“There was a fair amount of conversation and I think our clubs see it the same way. I can’t deal with hypotheticals,” Goodell said.

Reminded that President Donald Trump tweeted again Wednesday about the demonstrations during the anthem, Goodell said there was nothing unpatriotic about his league.

“Everyone feels strongly about our country and have pride,” he said, adding the NFL is “not afraid of tough conversations.

“What we are trying to stay out of is politics.”

Goodell noted that only six or seven players are still kneeling or are involved in protests.

“We hope we will continue to work to put that at zero,” he said.

On Tuesday, in an unprecedented move for a league meeting, a group of 11 owners and more than a dozen players met for more than two hours at NFL headquarters. Among the topics discussed was enhancing the players’ platforms for speaking out on social issues.

“I understand the way they feel about these issues,” Goodell said Wednesday. “We feel the same about patriotism and the flag and I believe our players feel that way. We have a great deal of support for the efforts of our players.”

Trump blasts NFL for not demanding players stand during national anthem


Trump blasts NFL for not demanding players stand during national anthem

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is again criticizing the NFL over players kneeling during the national anthem.

Trump said on Twitter Wednesday that the “NFL has decided that it will not force players to stand for the playing of our National Anthem.”

He adds: “Total disrespect for our great country!”

Trump appeared to be responding to the NFL annual fall meeting on Tuesday. The league invited players and representatives from their union to discuss social issues.

The topic of the national anthem was not discussed at length. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said owners did not ask players to commit to standing during the anthem.

Trump has suggested the owners should “fire” any players who knelt during “The Star-Spangled Banner.”