The league airport scene meet

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the league airport scene meet

Nearly all of the league's longtime sponsors, from Papa John's to For one thing, this was not the usual scandal or crisis the league could fight in the . Goodell after a private meeting at Dulles International Airport on Oct. 3. An Indian civil engineer who sneaked on to the Sharjah International Airport runway and created quite the scene told Khaleej Times that he. Here's what happens when an airport love story goes horribly wrong We're now wondering if this is a deleted scene from the Friends finale.

This wasn't an "anthem protest" but rather an "inequality in America" protest. Knowing that their motives and message had largely been lost in the political chaos, the players told stories of their personal connections to the military and showed a good grasp of the business problems suddenly confronting the league. Left unsaid was the warning issued on Oct. Several league staff members presented a three-pronged action plan: The league had scrapped a staff idea to extend an olive branch to Kaepernick -- who in October filed a collusion claim against the owners -- by inviting him to visit the league headquarters.

The action plan had met harsh criticism when it was first introduced inside the league office the Thursday before the owners' meetings. Anna Isaacson, the NFL's vice president of social responsibility, chief marketing officer Dawn Hudson and others had presented the plan to Goodell and top executives, including public relations chief Joe Lockhart, chief operating officer Tod Leiweke, chief media and business officer Brian Rolapp and general counsel Jeff Pash.

the league airport scene meet

Isaacson characterized the plan as a chance to seize the social moment and make an impact beyond football. There was also a request for a huge marketing budget.

The league's business executives ripped it, accusing Isaacson -- who had joined the NFL after working in merchandising and community relations for baseball's Brooklyn Cyclones -- and Hudson of losing sight of the goal, which was to persuade all the players to stand for the anthem. The plan was "too political," they said, and would likely invite further attacks by Trump. As the proposal was discussed, Goodell remained mostly quiet but seethed because he felt the plan was uninspired.

Neither Goodell nor the business executives liked the action plan at that moment, but what worried the business executives was that Goodell was not focused on what they deemed the priority: Fact was, they were right. Goodell believed that all players should stand, but he and Vincent had been working with them for more than a year on their concerns, calling them individually and holding meetings, and the commissioner deeply cared about their cause.

Now, in the meeting with players, Goodell, despite his initial reservations about Isaacson's plan, supported it "full bore," an owner says.

the league airport scene meet

Not only that, the commissioner moved around the room to guide the conversation about its pluses. Many times he told the owners they weren't hearing the players' core arguments.

The players and the union executives, who have been at odds with Goodell for years, were impressed. This was Goodell leading in a manner they'd rarely seen: He was not playing a zero-sum game, he was not risk-averse and his compassion clearly lay with the players in the face of severe pressure from hard-line owners and business executives.

DeMaurice Smith, the players' association chief, was uncharacteristically quiet during the session, having found a way to move forward on this issue with Goodell after a private meeting at Dulles International Airport on Oct. In a similar sort of way, the players concluded that Goodell seemed to be speaking for himself more than for many owners and even the league -- something that stunned them because, after all, some players privately view the commissioner as the puppet of ruthless billionaire owners.

Gaffes, TV ratings concerns dominated as NFL, players forged anthem peace

The meeting was going so well that even the unintentionally awkward moments were forgiven. At one point, Buffalo Bills co-owner Terry Pegula, moved by Anquan Boldin's story about his cousin being shot and killed by a police officer, complimented him on how impressive he was but kept calling him "Antwan.

But the discussion resumed, and soon the session was running so long -- by 90 minutes -- that nobody knew how to end it. At one point, Robert Kraft mumbled to the two Jets players seated on either side of him, "Can we just shut the f up and end this?

But it was hard to tell if it was just optics. Shortly after 1 p.

Gaffes, TV ratings concerns dominated as NFL, players forged anthem peace during league meetings

Players were still skeptical that the owners and league executives beyond Goodell were motivated to act -- a week later, Chargers tackle Russell Okung would label the league's lack of urgency "disappointing" and said the players-owners meeting appeared "unproductive at best and disingenuous at worst.

It was uncertain and tense. Most pro-stand owners, like Dan Snyder of the Washington Redskins, had been purposefully excluded from the players' meeting. Inside the conference room, Goodell kicked off the session by asking each of the 11 owners to give his account of the players' meeting. Nearly all offered slight variations on the same theme: It was a very good session; the players were passionate and very impressive; we've got a lot of work to do to address their concerns and to use the NFL platform to address these difficult social, racial and justice issues.

The mandate to stand wasn't mentioned. Goodell didn't interrupt anyone, and he summed it up by saying that the two sides were "on a good path to a partnership. Jones asked a pair of benign questions about the process for Isaacson's proposal, a far different occurrence than in the committee meetings three weeks earlier when, according to an owner, he had "hijacked" the protest discussion. But Goodell had purposefully tabled the discussion out of deference to Jones, giving him the evening to speak to owners and gauge the support for a league-wide mandate to stand.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell led in a manner owners had rarely seen: While league staffers reviewed mundane legal matters and pored over a PowerPoint presentation showcasing this season's declining TV ratings, a strange suspense lingered over the session, given that the anthem issue remained unresolved: What would Jerry Jones say?

By late morning, Goodell finally moved the discussion to the protests.

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It was a "special privileged session," with only owners plus one adviser allowed. He said that there were real business issues at stake, and he mentioned that in his market, the defense industry and other sponsors were angry about the protests. He didn't put any dollars on it.

To many in the room, Snyder's speech felt like an opening act for the headlining band. After Snyder sat down, Jones stood and left no question that it was his floor.

At first, some in the room admired Jones' pure bravado, the mix of folksy politician and visionary salesman he has perfected. But he was angry. He said the owners had to take the business impact seriously, as the league was threatened by a polarizing issue it couldn't contain or control. To some in the room, it was clear Jones was trying to build momentum for an anthem mandate resolution, and in the words of one owner, "he brought up a lot of fair points.

As Jones spoke, Snyder mumbled out loud, "See, Jones gets it -- 96 percent of Americans are for guys standing," a claim some dismissed as a grand overstatement.

McNair, a multimillion-dollar Trump campaign contributor, spoke next, echoing many of the same business concerns. That statement stunned some in the room. Then Kraft, who is close friends with Trump, politely rebuked the hardliners, saying that he supported the league's marketing proposal and predicted the issue would work itself out over time. This argument seemed to find a receptive audience in the room.

An unofficial count had only nine owners in favor of a mandate, though the reasons for the opposition varied: Some owners had tired of Jones always commandeering such meetings; some were jealous of his power and eager to see him go down; some saw the players-must-stand mandate as bad policy to invoke in the middle of the season; some owners were angry with Jones' hard-line public stance on kneeling, feeling that it had backed them all into a corner.

Editor's Picks Six days in September: NFL players seized control as league scrambled How the NFL and its team owners, famous for ironclad control, grappled with losing it after an attack by President Trump and a rise of player protests during the national anthem. Now, suddenly, Jones found himself in an unfamiliar position: He wasn't getting his way. He knew it, and everyone knew it.

Like the numerous reasons behind the protests, the business concerns were nuanced -- one major sponsor had threatened to pull out if the NFL were to issue a mandate to stand.

Though Jones and Snyder were angry with him -- they felt that if he had forced Kaepernick to stand a year ago, this crisis could have been averted -- York and Jeffrey Lurie of the Eagles had emerged as thoughtful leaders. Knowing that many of the players who were still kneeling were on his 49ers, York emphasized that he understood the business concerns and that each market was different, and that he had been talking to his players for a long time and would continue to do so.

Lurie had spoken up during the meeting, supporting the players' right to kneel. After the owners finished, Troy Vincent stood up.

Captain America: Civil War - Airport Battle Scene (Part One | 1080p)

He was offended by McNair's characterization of the players as "inmates. McNair later pulled Vincent aside and apologizedsaying that he felt horrible and that his words weren't meant to be taken literally, which Vincent appreciated. The meetings were already running long and were ending on a raw note -- and there were more agenda items to hit.

For the second time in a month, a few frustrated owners grumbled about Lockhart, angry that the league was, as usual, appearing to be reactive in a public relations sense in the face of a crippling crisis.

the league airport scene meet

League executives worried that during upcoming events -- Veterans Day and the NFL's Salute to Service -- pro-military groups might stage protests. Goodell left the meeting room to be ushered to a news conference. The final topic of a long morning was the most salient one: Jones is not technically on the six-person committee that determines Goodell's compensation, but he has willed himself onto it. And so, before everyone could leave, he spoke for 20 minutes, delving into all of the league's problems that everyone knew by heart.

He wanted Goodell's contract to be more incentive-based than it is. This speech, like the one earlier in the day by him, was not vintage Jones: His usual annoying but endearing Jerryisms were replaced by a palpable urgency; it seemed to a few owners as if only Jones could see that an opportunity to regain control of the league was slipping away. And by calling her, you just ruined the whole surprise. She had already made her way through security.

Not wishing to make my true feelings known from opposite sides of passport control, I desperately tried to downplay it all and backpedal At one point I genuinely tried to pretend I had just been in the area, passing Heathrow Airport and, y'know, thought maybe I'd drop by? She and I didn't speak for two whole years after that incident — me thinking she'd rejected me; her thinking I'd got terminally cold feet They stopped talking after she moved.

Now, in this wonderful digital world of ours where everybody is switched on and you can Skype someone 10,km away in a second, this was clearly deliberate. She wanted nothing to do with him, and he was clearly too socially inept to do anything about it.

She came back London two years later, and suggested we meet up. I was scouting for venues for a new storytelling night at the time, so we went for a drink at the Black Heart in Camden to catch up Me, the girlfriend I met through the Guardian column I got as a direct result of the airport incident. She, the man she is marrying today. There's no real lesson in this, nor much advice to take.

I'm just deeply, deeply grateful — both to Kate, and for all that has come to pass. Her name was Kate, not Tiffany.

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