By SI Wire
October 08, 2014

Two-thirds of fans surveyed in a recent Associated Press-GfK Poll think that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell should not lose his job after the way he handled the league’s recent rash of domestic violence cases.

According to the poll, 66 percent said Goodell should keep his job, while 32 percent think that he should be replaced. The poll was conducted Sept. 25-29 and included online interviews with 1,845 adults, with 836 of those saying they are NFL fans. The sampling error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points for all surveyed and plus or minus 3.8 percentage points for the NFL fans.

Goodell admitted he was wrong in the way he handled the punishment of former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice. Rice was initially suspended two games after being charged with assaulting his then-fiancee, now wife. The league then suspended Rice indefinitely after TMZ posted a video on its website last month showing Rice hitting Janay Rice. Rice is appealing that suspension.

About 42 percent said they disapprove of the way Goodell handled the case, with the same percentage neither approving nor disapproving and 15 percent approving.

Those surveyed were asked about Rice being allowed to play. Forty-three percent of fans said Rice should not be allowed to play again, with 7 percent saying he should be able to play now. Also half surveyed would approved of Rice returning if he missed more time.

Fifty-four percent of fans think Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson should be allowed to play again if he is found not guilty of charges of reckless or negligent injury to a child and 29 percent say he should be able to return regardless of the outcome of the court case. Only 15 percent say Peterson should never play again.

Only a quarter of white fans say that Peterson should be allowed to play no matter the court case’s outcome, while 45 percent of black fans say he should be allowed to return.

- Scooby Axson

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