Week 3 fantasy football: The NFL's overmatched commissioner

College Contributor Network

Week 3 will be the equivalent to the overwhelmed graduate student teaching your class.

There is nothing worse than a college math class. They sucked in high school and they most certainly will suck again now, especially since you do not remember much of anything you previously learned. (Disclaimer: this is how academics work today: you have a test. You memorize information for the test. You take the test. You forget everything you memorized for the test two weeks later).

Now, add a 24-year-old graduate student who has never actually taught a class by themselves before to the mix as your "professor," and... alakazam! Your worst nightmare has just been created.

For Roger Goodell and the NFL, this past week has also been a nightmare.

Last weekend, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was deactivated for Sunday's game against the Patriots after being indicted on felony charges of "reckless or negligent injury to a child" to his four-year-old son.

This week, Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer was arrested on assault charges, including preventing someone from calling 911.

Carolina Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy was deactivated in Week 2 and will stay on the commissioner's exempt list until his domestic violence case is resolved, while San Francisco 49ers defensive tackle Ray McDonald was allowed to play despite a pending domestic disturbance charge from last month.

All this comes within one week of the Ray Rice tape, which showed the Baltimore Ravens' running back knocking his future wife unconscious in the elevator at the Revel Atlantic City casino back in February. The NFL, after the public surfacing of the tape, has since suspended Rice indefinitely.

Amid this nightmare, the NFL's Commissioner has had his hands full. While trying to maintain the league's image after its players have committed despicable acts of domestic violence against women, Goodell has been inconsistent in his punishment of players. And most noticeably, he's appeared to be overwhelmed.

The main difference between a graduate student and a tenured professor is that the tenured professor has experience. And with experience comes authority and knowing how to handle difficult situations. They've taught the class year after year and once spent countless hours writing the syllabus that no student will actually ever read.

But the disappointing part with Goodell is that he's been the commissioner of the NFL for eight years now. While he may not be as tenured as Gary Bettman of the NHL (21 years) or Bud Selig of the MLB (16 years), Goodell is by no means lacking experience.

So how did he give Ray Rice an initial two-game suspension without asking the Revel Atlantic City for the elevator footage to see what happened? It would be like the grad student handing out an exam without asking students to clear their calculator's memory first. It would be illogical.

And if math has taught us anything, it's taught us that logic is important. Maybe the NFL should take some notes.

Bryan Rubin is a senior at Syracuse University. He once ate Chipotle three times in one day and woke up at 3:46 a.m. on a Wednesday morning to make a roster move to his fantasy football team (while his friends were sleeping) to avoid wasting his No. 1 waiver claim. Follow him on Twitter: @bryan_rubin
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