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The NFL isn’t in the TMZ business and probably wouldn’t ever be in it. NFL special counsel for conduct Todd Jones told reporters on Wednesday that the league won’t start paying for videos or other information relevant to investigations regarding player misconduct.

Jones, an NFL executive involved in off-field discipline, described the league’s investigative powers as “limited.” He said league officials act as swiftly as possible when they are able to obtain evidence like the video in the Kareem Hunt incident, but that evidence is not always readily available.


As was the case with the video of Ray Rice punching his now-wife Janay Palmer in an elevator, TMZ obtained the footage of  Hunt kicking and shoving a woman earlier this year without the NFL ever having seen it. Jones noted that outlets like TMZ have the option of paying for the evidence, whereas the NFL doesn’t.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell also said it is “not appropriate” for the NFL to pay for video evidence.

The NFL in most cases would be tempted to conceal the videos. Which leads back to the question of whether the NFL truly wants to get these videos, or whether the NFL is content to simply wait for someone else to get the video (or, even better, not get the video) and then shrug and say, “Well, we tried.”

This is a win for TMZ over the NFL. Whenever people see an NFL player out in the streets, cameras will be rolling to hit up TMZ for some money.