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NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. (Associated Press)

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. (Associated Press)

Gazzolo: New Orleans, Goodell have making up to do

Last Modified: Monday, January 28, 2013 12:24 PM

By Jim Gazzolo / American Press

It is time for New Orleans fans to move on.

Time for them to forgive if not forget.

Time to understand this is about the future, not the past.

Time to put on their best show possible.

The Super Bowl is headed back to the Big Easy so let the party begin.

Yet there are some who don’t seem ready to let go and enjoy the biggest event in American sports.

There are those who want to make sure at least a few of the NFL’s elite have a rough time.

Mainly, they would like to make this upcoming week the longest in commissioner Roger Goodell’s life. There has even been some talk about restaurants not serving the commish, or making sure his stay is less than enjoyable.

While I would not say he should bring his own food testers, there are many who seem more than willing to hold a grudge.

They blame Goodell for the Saints’ poor season, for the fact their team is not playing in the Super Bowl itself.

They don’t want to hear about a defense that gave up territory like the French army. They also don’t want to hear about a quarterback who threw way too many interceptions at bad times, or a club that handed Kansas City one of its two wins — at home.

All they want to talk and hear about is how Goodell ruined their party by sending their head coach to the penalty box for an entire season.

Yet Sean Payton, now back with the club and making more money than ever before, has moved on. He has admitted his wrongs in the bounty gate mess and is ready to put the past behind him.

The fans should follow his lead for their own good.

The city must go out of its way to make this the best Super Bowl week possible. The reason for that is simple, to bring the game back as soon as possible.

It has been 11 years since the biggest of games was played in New Orleans. That’s the longest drought for this town that is hosting its ninth Super Sunday.

And it has been a long 11 years with lots of changes and questions.

In that time New Orleans suffered the most horrific of naturals disasters, had their own team on the brink of bolting town and has become a much more dangerous place to party.

With that kind of a track record, some wondered if the Super Bowl was ever going to come back.

Now it is here and this town sure needs it.

That makes this upcoming week the biggest maybe in the city’s history.

The Sugar Bowl is nice. The Final Four is great. The BCS title game is outstanding. But the Super Bowl is one of a kind.

The eyes of the entire sports world will be focused on New Orleans for an entire week, so it is in the best interest of all parties to put on the perfect show.

Of course, you can’t do that when you hold a grudge against the leader of the enemy.

And to many in New Orleans, Goodell is public enemy No. 1.

Makes sense. You can’t blame those who broke the rules when there is the man who enforce them there for the hounding.

Whether Goodell was right or not, or whether he overstepped his powers don’t really matter any more. What’s done is done.

Blaming him for the Saints’ woes last fall is to forget that this team could not stop San Francisco twice in the playoffs a year ago.

Now Payton is back, the franchise is solidly put in New Orleans and the Super Bowl is back in town.

Time to make Goodell and the rest of the NFL happy to be here and even more excited to come back.

Now is not the time to cut off your nose to spite the commish.

Now is the time to forget the past year, look to the future and enjoy the moment, and cash that will be flowing into the town.

And yes, time to let the party begin.

Might not be a bad idea to buy Goodell a drink if you get the chance.

Spiking it is your own option.


Jim Gazzolo is managing sports editor. Email him at

Posted By: darrell On: 1/28/2013

Title: new orleans

If goodell was such good friend of no why did it take 11 years to get another super bowl? This is not a friend of the who dat nation!

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