Lofton on Goodell's 'double standard'

METAIRIE, La. -- Add New Orleans Saints linebacker Curtis Lofton to the chorus of players and analysts who don’t feel NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is holding himself to the same standard to which he has held players and teams in the past.

Lofton told ESPN’s Josina Anderson that “there’s no accountability in that” and “it’s kind of a double standard.” And he doesn’t feel that one man should have all that power.

“I think that you can’t handle situations one way, but when you are involved in a situation do the complete opposite. I think that there’s no accountability in that. Something needs to change,” said Lofton, who joined the Saints in 2012, during the middle of the bounty fallout, as some of the most severe punishments in NFL history were being handed out and fought via appeal.

“One man has all the power and there’s no checks and balances. So there needs to be a change, and it definitely needs to start with that,” Lofton continued. “I think as players it’s frustrating and you’re upset about it, because whenever a guy messes up, there are consequences, and we all preach about ‘protecting the shield, protecting the shield.’ But when the commissioner doesn’t protect the shield, what comes of it? What consequences does he face and is he having to deal with? There hasn’t been anything. So I think it’s kind of a double standard.”

Anderson also reported that former Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma told her via text that he didn’t even “waste my time” watching Goodell’s news conference on Friday.

Former Saints who were affected by the bounty scandal like Vilma, Scott Fujita, Will Smith, Jabari Greer and Scott Shanle have been vocal and critical of that same double standard in recent weeks. However, coach Sean Payton, quarterback Drew Brees and other current Saints have mostly reserved their comments on Goodell’s handling of the Rice investigation.

Offensive tackle Zach Strief summed things up best last week when he said he doesn’t know what Goodell should be held accountable for and what he shouldn’t during the latest investigation. But he quickly added that he will “always feel” that Goodell was “100 percent” wrong in his handling of the Saints’ bounty investigation and that Goodell was proven wrong when all of his player suspensions were vacated on appeal by former commissioner Paul Tagliabue.