There’s still plenty of rumbling among owners about the Patriots-Roger Goodell dynamic after an awkward postgame ceremony in which the commissioner was booed vociferously as he handed the Lombardi Trophy off to the various figures in the Deflategate saga.
Several ownership sources said that the once-cozy relationship between Goodell and Patriots owner Robert Kraft is still frayed and might always be. The fact that Kraft called this fifth Super Bowl title “the sweetest” one yet ruffled feathers on Park Avenue at the league office and the image of Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia stepping off the team plane wearing a T-shirt depicting Goodell as a clown had some NFL executives seething, I’m told.
“The T-shirt really bothered him,” according to one ownership source who had been in contact with big wigs at the league office. “The fact that Kraft didn’t stop him from wearing that ticked some people off, but did they really think he’s going to protect Goodell after all of this?”