Former President Bill Clinton took the stage to introduce the night’s guest of honor, former United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, but took a moment to acknowledge Goodell agreeing to the deal, despite the fight put up by Jerry Jones.
“Thank you, Roger Goodell, for your partnership and congratulations,” Clinton said, receiving a room full of laughs in response.
“I really appreciate your leadership,” Vilsack said to Goodell during his speech, “and certainly as a football fan am glad to see that you’re going to continue to be the commissioner of one of America’s great leagues.”
The rest of the room, however, didn’t feel quite the same way.
“Who gets $40 million per year for five years? That’s ridiculous,” one attendee told The Post. “He ruined the NFL, and this will definitely hurt the NFL’s reputation.”
“He should be ashamed of how he treats his players. If he’s making $40 million a year I hope Colin Kaepernick takes him to the cleaners,” noted another, referencing the protesting quarterback’s collusion lawsuit against the league.
The NFL Commissioner’s new deal is for roughly $200 million over five years.
Goodell, 58, made headlines in November after his contract demands, which included $49.5 million per year, a lifetime private jet, and health insurance for his family, leaked. Goodell has made over $200 million in his career as NFL commissioner, a role he assumed in 2006.
Also attending the gala was former Giants running back Rashad Jennings, who was there in support of the nonprofit’s signature programs, Fuel Up to Play 60 and Fuel Up to Play 60 en Español.