We told you yesterday about a meeting that Adrian Peterson and the NFLPA missing a meeting with the league that had been scheduled for Friday. Today, Peterson and the NFLPA have issued a statement to explain why that was. Here is the statement in its entirety.
The report that I backed out of a meeting with the NFL is just not true. When Roger Goodell's office asked that I attend the "hearing" on Friday, I consulted with my union and learned that this "hearing" was something new and inconsistent with the CBA. On Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of this past week, my union sent emails, letters, and had conversations with his office on my behalf asking about the nature of the hearing, how it was to occur, who would participate, and its purpose. We repeatedly asked them to respond quickly to my questions because I want to cooperate and get back on the field, but they didn't respond until late Wednesday evening, and even then they didn't answer important questions about their proposed "hearing."
After consulting with the union, I told the NFL that I will attend the standard meeting with the Commissioner prior to possible imposition of discipline, as has been the long-term practice under the CBA, but I wouldn't participate in a newly created and non-collectively bargained pre-discipline "hearing" that would include outside people I don't know and who would have roles in the process that the NFL wouldn't disclose. At this point, I've resolved my matter in the criminal court; I've worked to make amends for what I've done; I've missed most of the season, and I stand ready to be candid and forthcoming with Mr. Goodell about what happened. However, I will not allow the NFL to impose a new process of discipline on me, ignore the CBA, ignore the deal they agreed to with me, and behave without fairness or accountability. The process they are pushing is arbitrary, inconsistent, and contrary to what they agreed to do, and for those reasons, I never agreed to the hearing.
I'm sorry for all of this, but I can't excuse their refusal to be fair.
Actually, that makes a lot of sense from where I'm sitting. As we've said since Peterson entered his plea of "no contest" to the charges that had been brought against him, Roger Goodell and the National Football League were making things up as they went along, and this hearing that was scheduled for Friday now appears to be another example of that.
To be frank about this, there's honestly no reason to believe anything that comes out of the National Football League offices on this matter any more. Hell, there's no reason to believe anything that comes out of the National Football League offices about anything at this point.
The hearing for Peterson's removal from the Commissioner's Exempt list will happen (via conference call) at 1 PM Central time on Monday, and a ruling has to come down within five days. Many people seem to think that it won't take all five days for a decision to come down. At that point, we'll get to whatever discipline the NFL is going to hand down, which will likely be immediately appealed, and the fun will begin anew.
Here's one take on where we're going here.
Schefter on Adrian Peterson: "My sense is still that he will play this season & sooner rather than later."— Evan Silva (@evansilva) November 16, 2014
If only it were that simple. It could be but, apparently, it is not.