DeMaurice Smith: Roger Goodell presiding over NFL 'credibility gap'

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DeMaurice Smith says Roger Goodell is also holding up an HGH testing program. (Getty Images)

DeMaurice Smith

NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith criticized NFL commissioner Roger Goodell on Thursday as part of a wide-ranging interview with ESPN's Sal Paolantonio.

Smith centered his criticism on what he sees as a "credibility gap" from league management on the issue of punishments, pointing to Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay's arrest for driving under the influence and possession of a controlled substance in March.

Irsay was found with $29,000 and bottles of prescription drugs in his car. He was charged last week with two misdemeanors, but he has yet to be reprimanded by the league.

"The commissioner understands that there is a significant credibility gap that exists in the National Football League," Smith told Paolantonio. "What troubles our players is the speed and the deliberateness of the punishment that they have seen in the past when it comes to a player. There isn't the same speed or deliberate action when it comes to an owner, and that's a problem."

Smith was also critical of Goodell on the topic of HGH testing. Players and the league are at an impasse, Smith said, because players do not agree with Goodell's stance he should serve as the final arbiter of discipline for players testing positive.

"It's not being held up on anything that has to do with HGH," Smith said. "It's not being held up on anything that has to do with DUIs. It's not being held up on anything that has to do with the frequency of testing.

"It's being held up because one man wants to keep the power to be the judge, jury and executioner. That's not right."

SI WIRE: Colts owner Jim Irsay charged with two misdemeanors >