Goodell Says Vick Should Be Focused on Legal Troubles, Not Return to NFL

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is making the television rounds as the new season approaches, but isn't saying much about the indefinite suspension that he imposed on Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick after Vick pleaded guilty in his federal dogfighting case.

Goodell basically avoided the subject in separate interviews with HBO and ESPN, saying that Vick's focus at this point needs to be on his legal troubles and likely jail term.

"I think the important here to be focused on, this is a legal issue," Goodell said during his HBO interview, according to a transcript provided by the network. "He's facing serious criminal charges. And he has pled guilty to serious criminal charges. He shouldn't be worrying about the National Football League right now. This young man is going to jail. It's a tragedy."

Goodell declined to say during the HBO interview whether he expects Vick to ever play in the NFL again.

"I don't have to make that decision as we sit here," Goodell said. "I still have not met with either Michael or his representatives. I still don't know exactly how the legal process is going to conclude. I want to see that."

Goodell had his one-year anniversary on the job Saturday. The league canceled a recently scheduled interview session between Goodell and newspaper reporters, citing a scheduling conflict.

By Mark Maske |  September 4, 2007; 8:47 PM ET  | Category:  Falcons , League
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