NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is losing credibility quickly as the fallout from the Ray Rice video continues.
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In a stunning turn of events, the Associated Press has reported that police sent the NFL a copy of the now infamous video of RB Ray Rice punching his then-fiancee, now-wife Janay in a hotel elevator in Atlantic City.
In the AP story, it says a source played a voicemail from April 9 that came from a phone number at the NFL offices, in which a female voice says the tape was received, expresses thanks and says: “You’re right. It’s terrible.”
The source could not tell AP for certain if anyone at the NFL offices had watched the video, and he had no further contact with any other NFL employees. The AP report said the source was unauthorized to release the video but “shared it unsolicited, because they wanted the NFL to have it before deciding on Rice’s punishment.”
This will lead to many more questions, and these are the most pressing ones: Who exactly at the NFL got the video, did they show it to commissioner Roger Goodell, and if they didn’t, why not?
In addition, ABC News reported that the Baltimore Ravens knew the full surveillance video existed and that Rice’s lawyers had a copy, but never asked to see it.
The league has been adamant that it hadn’t seen the full tape. When it was released by TMZ on Monday, the league specifically said to TMZ through a spokesman: “We requested from law enforcement any and all information about the incident, including the video from inside the elevator. That video was not made available to us and no one in our office has seen it until today.”
The NFL responded to the AP report with a basic statement that continued its insistence it had not seen the full video before Monday:
“We have no knowledge of this. We are not aware of anyone who possessed or saw the video before it was made public on Monday. We will look into it,” the statement said, via NBC Nightly News.