By Steve Ginsburg and Anjali Athavaley
(Reuters) – Anheuser-Busch publicly chastised the National Football League on Tuesday for its handling of domestic violence cases, making the NFL’s official beer sponsor the first major advertiser to put pressure on America’s most popular sports league.
In a brief but strongly worded statement, Anheuser-Busch, the maker of Budweiser and Bud Light, said it was “disappointed and increasingly concerned by the recent incidents that have overshadowed this NFL season.
(Reuters) – The Minnesota Vikings should sideline running back Adrian Peterson until his child abuse case works its way through the courts, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton said on Tuesday, criticizing the team’s decision to reactivate the NFL player.
Peterson is accused of punishing his 4-year-old son in Texas last May by beating him with a tree branch, known as a switch. The incident is one of a series of domestic abuse cases that has rocked the National Football League.
(Reuters) – The circumstances surrounding a fatal dirt-track accident involving three-time NASCAR champion Tony Stewart in upstate New York last month will be heard by a grand jury, authorities said on Tuesday.
Stewart, one of the biggest names in auto racing, struck and killed 20-year-old Kevin Ward during a non-NASCAR sprint car race on Aug. 9 at Canandaigua Motorsports Park.
(Reuters) – Adrian Peterson, a marquee National Football League running back facing charges of child abuse for injuries he caused when disciplining his son, was reinstated by the Minnesota Vikings on Monday.
Peterson was held out of the Vikings’ game on Sunday, a 30-7 loss to the New England Patriots, following his indictment last week in Texas for negligent injury to his 4-year-old son, the latest domestic violence case to rock the NFL.
(Reuters) – Adrian Peterson, one of the National Football League’s top running backs, was reinstated on Monday by the Minnesota Vikings despite his indictment for negligent injury to a child.
“To be clear, we take very seriously any matter that involves the welfare of a child,” Vikings owners Zygi Wilf and Mark Wilf said in a statement. “At this time, however, we believe this is a matter of due process and we should allow the legal system to proceed so we can come to the most effective conclusions and then determine the appropriate course of action.”
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s fumbling of the Ray Rice domestic abuse case threatens to send women, an increasingly influential group of the National Football League’s fan base, scrambling to hit the off button on their remote controls, sports business analysts say.
Over the span of a generation, women have gone from being casual fans to meaningful customers of the league and now account for 45 percent of the NFL audience, between television and stadiums. Some 6 million women tune in to NFL games every week.
(Reuters) – A major advertiser expressed support for NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on Thursday, while a women’s advocacy group called for his resignation in the mounting controversy over his handling of former Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice’s domestic violence case.
The NFL late on Wednesday named former FBI Director Robert Mueller III to lead an inquiry into how the league dealt with evidence in the case, particularly security video from an elevator showing Rice knocking out his then-fiancee and now-wife Janay Palmer with a punch.
(Reuters) – The NFL said on Wednesday it was unaware of any of its officials obtaining a video five months ago showing former player Ray Rice knocking out his then-fiancee in an elevator, but it will “look into” a report that it received the clip in April.
A law enforcement official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told the Associated Press he had sent the video of the February incident to a league official in April because he wanted the NFL to have it before deciding how to punish Rice.
(Reuters) – Embattled National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell said he did not believe his job was on the line over his handling of the Ray Rice domestic abuse case.
In a CBS This Morning interview that aired on Wednesday, Goodell said flatly, “No,” when asked if his job was in peril.
(Reuters) – The owners of the Buffalo Bills reached an agreement on Tuesday to sell the National Football League franchise to Terry and Kim Pegula, who already own the National Hockey League’s Buffalo Sabres.
Terry Pegula, 63, a natural gas development and real estate mogul, has been a popular figure in Buffalo for his commitment to keep the franchise in western New York state.