The Colts will hold training camp in Anderson, IN for the first time in twelve years this season. The other little change regarding camp this year is that The Commish himself is planning to visit, and he's dragging retired coach-broadcaster John Madden along with him:
The trip to Terre Haute (or wherever the Colts currently hold their camp . . . it's early on a Saturday and I'm too lazy too look it up) will occur during Hall of Fame weekend. Goodell and Madden will attend Hall of Fame events on Friday, August 6, and he'll return for the Saturday night induction ceremony in Canton.
Aiello said that Goodell plans to meet with players, coaches, and fans during the training camp trips.
I got the chance to interview Roger Goodell at the NFL Draft this year. As far as I know, it was the first time bloggers (real bloggers) were given an opportunity to talk directly to the commissioner. It's not like he's an easy man to see. The NFL PR staff were very gracious to allow Jason Brewer, Joel Thorman, and myself access to The Commish, and I think all of us agreed that he came off as engaging and thoughtful on many NFL-related topics.
Unlike the seemingly stand-offish and aloof Paul Tagliabue (Goodell's predecessor), our league's current commissioner is often seen signing autographs, talking with fans, and reaching out to people who watch and enjoy pro football. Goodell may not be the "perfect" commissioner, but the image he is trying to convey is that he believes in the integrity of the NFL game. So, things like Spygate, HGH use, and resting starters late in the season are all topics he is willing to openly discuss with fans. Other commissioners might shy away from chatting about such issues. Goodell is a personable guy who won't dismiss tough questions. I respect that.
So, if you are there in Anderson on August 7th, I recommend attending any special event that involves Goodell.