Any NFL punishment for Tyreek Hill is still down the line, based on Commissioner Roger Goodell’s Wednesday comments.
At the NFL owners’ meetings on Wednesday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell was asked for a statement on Kansas City Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill. Goodell’s reply:
Several things stick out about this one Tweet.
First, Goodell pointed to ongoing court proceedings related to Hill, his fiancee Crystal Espinal and their young son. In reality, the Johnson County District Attorney stated back on April 24 that his office was closing the case against Hill for a lack of evidence. Although Chiefs head coach Andy Reid later seemed to indicate that the case had been reopened after the leaked audio recording of Hill and Espinal, that has not been confirmed by the District Attorney’s office. So one could wonder what court proceedings Goodell is referring to.
Perhaps he is referring to Hill and Espinal’s ongoing situation in family court, where their son was deemed to be a CINC (“child in need of care”) and was removed from their custody. But those proceedings may go on for quite some time as the parents work to regain custody of their son. So if Goodell wants to wait until that is resolved, it may be some time before a decision is made regarding Hill’s future in the NFL.
Second, Goodell mentions that the priority is the young child involved. That seems to be the sentiment of most who have been following this situation; everyone wants the child to be safe above all else. But again, this points to the fact that Goodell may want to delay any sort of judgment about the future of Hill in the league until the family court situation is resolved.
Finally, it is noteworthy that apparently the NFL has not yet spoken with Hill directly about any of this. Perhaps that is standard protocol in such situations, with the NFLPA presumably wanting the league to stay out of issues until they are more resolved, and to not react to accusations. However, with the amount of publicity this situation has garnered, it is surprising that Goodell or his representatives have not yet attempted to speak with Hill to get some sort of statement on the situation.
Either way, perhaps this slower process is intentional. The NFL does prefer to wait until any legal matters have been resolved before imposing any discipline of its own. Goodell and the NFL are taking their time before making a decision about Hill’s football future.