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Is it just me, or did anyone else notice how NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s comments last week could have fit nicely in the movie, “Undercover Brother?”
Goodell sounded like one of those news anchors in the 2002 classic comedy as they described black presidential candidate General Warren Boutwell. Billy Dee Williams played that role, which was patterned after General Colin Powell.
It’s a great movie, if you haven’t seen it. It expertly makes fun of white and black stereotypes in hilarious fashion. Every American should see it.
Dave Chappelle plays “Conspiracy Brother Jones,” blaming The Man for virtually everything. Gary Anthony Williams portrays “Smart Brother.” Denise Richards is “White She-Devil.” Robert Trumbull plays “The Man,” who is white. Neil Patrick Harris plays a white intern. He got his job at the “Brotherhood” organization only because of affirmative action.
Eddie Griffin plays the title role as a black man who must go undercover as a white-sounding, white-acting black man to solve a case.
Notice, someone had to be called “Smart Brother.” The writers did not see a need to cast someone as, say, “Smart White Guy.”
Early in the movie, news anchors Wendy Marshall and Chuck Marlborough discuss the possible presidential candidacy of Boutwell (the Powell look-alike). And Powell, who was the Secretary of State under President George W. Bush from 2001-05, did consider a run for the White House in 2000 and in 1996 as a Republican. The National Security Advisor under President Ronald Reagan from 1987-89, Powell passed away in 2021.
“He is a strong candidate, Chuck. He’s so well-spoken,” Wendy says on the air.
“I’ve noticed that,” Chuck says.
“General Boutwell seems to have a lot of support all across the nation,” Wendy says.
“Yes, and just in the urban areas,” Chuck says.
Roger Goodell Sounded Like Anchor in ‘Undercover Brother’
Well, here is what Goodell said on Feb. 8 when asked what he thinks it says about the NFL that it took 57 Super Bowls to get to one with two black starting quarterbacks – Patrick Mahomes of Kansas City and Jalen Hurts of Philadelphia. (Mahomes and the Chiefs beat Hurts and the Eagles, 38-35, in a thrilling Super Bowl.)
“I think we have 11 black starting quarterbacks today,” Goodell says in the Chuck Marlborough role, if you will. “They are some of the best leaders I’ve seen. They’re extraordinary.”
NFL COMMISSIONER’S STATE OF THE LEAGUE ADDRESS
Uh, was Goodell saying that the leadership qualities of black quarterbacks historically have been questioned? As blacks first began trickling into starting quarterback positions in the 1970s with James Harris with the Los Angeles Rams and Doug Williams with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, questions of leadership ability frequently arose from whites.
“People talk about their talent and the ability to run,” the NFL commissioner continued. Black quarterbacks running ability is usually assumed, even when they’re not that fast.
Roger Goodell Said Black QBs ‘Understand The Offense’
“But they are incredible leaders,” Goodell said as if he was breaking news.
And here’s the clincher that could really fit into Wendy and Chuck’s newscast:
“They understand the offense,” Goodell actually said. “They run complex offenses.”
I expected him to say, “And they’re so well-spoken” next.
Was Goodell just expecting quarterbacks like Mahomes and Hurts to just mainly know how to run fast? Was he surprised that they understood the offense? He made it a point to say they did.
How About Roger Goodell In “Undercover Brother” Remake?
I see a remake of “Undercover Brother” with Neil Patrick Harris, 49, playing Goodell, 63. Harris previous credits include “Doogie Howser, M.D.,” “Gone Girl” and “How I Met Your Mother.”
Or maybe a Goodell cameo?