By Laura Pappano
This is a good Monday for the NY Jets: A smashing victory against rival NE Patriots – and the team won’t face punishment from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell for “unprofessional conduct” by coaches and players in the Ines Sainz case.
Or obvious punishment, that is. Jets owner Woody Johnson has agreed to underwrite a program to train players on appropriate conduct with the media in the workplace – something Christine Brennan has tweeted, could cost him $160,000.
The quick-thinking inoculation by the Jets to call in the Association for Women in Sports Media and Johnson to offer to underwrite the training shows there have been major advances in the NFL treatment of female reporters in the past 20 years. At least now, throwing balls and acting like a frat boy is considered wrong.
Not so on September 17, 1990 when Boston Herald reporter Lisa Olson was sexually harassed by NE Patriots players in the locker room. Despite an encounter that was so lewd and graphic that Olson called it “mind rape” – then Pats owner Victor Kiam labeled Olson “a classic bitch.”
Yes, there’s been progress. But it’s puzzling: Why is the NFL just getting to this sort of training now?