Favre Gets $50k Wrist Slap For Sexting
Closure was attained today in a case that has added insult to injury (no pun intended) for Brett Favre. The closure comes at the end of a 2010 NFL season that probably has him wondering why he ever got on that private jet to Minnesota in the first place. This wasn't the "season to win it all" by any means for Favre & The Vikings as they head into the final week of the regular season with a 6-9 record, no chance to make the playoffs, and a head coach that was fired weeks ago. Not quite the "perfect season" to end a career on, right ?
In October Deadspin.com got their hands on lewd pictures that Brett Favre allegedly sent to Jenn Sterger back in 2008 via text message. That year, Favre was quarterback for the New York Jets and Sterger was their hostess, basically paid to look really pretty and introduce cheerleaders from the sidelines and other things of that nature. Deadspin.com said they paid $12,000 for the photos that were posted on their site in October and since then Favre has had the sexting scandal looming over a very less than perfect season riddled with injuries, internal conflict and just plain bad football.
So fast forward to 3 days before his retirement (or so we think .. lol) and now the NFL has fined Brett Favre $50,000 for "failing to cooperate" with the leagues investigation into the sexting scandal involving Sterger and released a statement saying:
"The forensic analysis could not establish that Favre sent the objectionable photographs to Sterger."
The league also stated that Commissioner Roger Goodell "could not conclude" if Brett violated the league's personal conduct policy based on what evidence he had seen. The NFL also noted in it's report that Favre was flirting with two massage therapists who worked at the Jets' facility in 08' but that investigation was brought to a halt because people with "potentially relevant information" chose not to cooperate with investigators.
Upon the conclusion of the investigation Sterger's attorney released a statement lashing out at Favre and the League.
My client and I are extremely disappointed, but not surprised, at today’s NFL announcement that Brett Favre did not violate the NFL “workplace conduct” policy. While I am not privy to how Mr. Goodell reached such a finding, we strongly disagree with his conclusion that there was insufficient evidence to support a violation of the policy. To the contrary, our evidence and the personal testimony of Ms. Sterger clearly showed a pattern of lewd and offensive behavior by Mr. Favre that lasted all of the 2008 season. As noted in the NFL’s release, “there was no evidence to suggest that Sterger engaged in any inappropriate conduct.” In addition to the offensive messages, there was ample evidence to show that the sexually explicit photographs were part of Favre’s inappropriate behavior. Our evidence clearly showed that the photos were sent by Favre.
Likewise, Mr. Goodell completely failed to address the complicity of the New York Jet organization in Favre’s conduct. The evidence was explicit that Ms. Sterger’s personal telephone numbers were provided to Favre by still-current employees of the New York Jets. This was done without Ms. Sterger’s knowledge and consent.
Furthermore, the fact that the League took the step of fining Favre for “not being candid in several respects during the investigation” is disturbing in the message it sends. It clearly shows that an NFL star player was given preferential treatment and tells all other players that failure to cooperate may cost you some money but will not result in other punishment. Additionally, today’s decision is an affront to all females and shows once again that, despite tough talk, the NFL remains the good old boys’ league.
So who really loses at the end of this thing ? Is it Favre ? (no, and we'll explain why in a bit) Is it Sterger ? (no, she had nothing to lose, only $$$ and the satisfaction of seeing Favre "pay" a price for his actions, which, again, we'll explain why that didn't happen in a bit) The real loser at the end of this is Goodell, the "tough guy" who for years has talked like the "big deputy dog" of the NFL and now comes away looking very weak. Perception is reality, and the perception here is that an NFL player was above the law of the League. Goodell sent out a message to ALL NFL players along with the conclusion of this investigation stating that
"Every member of every club's staff should be able to work in an environment free of harassment or hostility, and one in which every employee is valued, respected and given a full opportunity to contribute to the goals of the club and the NFL."
He also referred to the "serious nature" of the Favre-Sterger scandal. How serious you ask ?
Since most of us don't live in the world of NFL football players, allow me to break down "how seriously" the fine will affect Favre:
- Brett Favre was paid $16 Million to come back for one season in Minnesota
- There are 16 games in the regular season
- That comes down to $1 Million a game
- An NFL Game is 60 minutes
- That is nearly 17,000 per minute
So basically, Brett Favre just lost 3 minutes of pay on a gameclock and will happily retire in 3 days.
Who's really in charge here ?