Pope gets special treatment from NFL Jets owner doesn’t…
Pope Francis is so powerful, he can cause the almighty NFL to change its schedule. As for Jets owner Woody Johnson? He doesn’t have that kind of sway.
With the Pope scheduled to preside over an outdoor mass in Philadelphia in late September — two million people are estimated to attend — the Archbishop of Philadelphia wrote a letter to commissioner Roger Goodell last July requesting the Eagles not play at home that weekend.
The league complied, sending the Eagles up the New Jersey Turnpike to take on the Jets in Week 3.
“The pope did influence the NFL schedule,” NFL senior vice president of broadcasting Howard Katz joked to MMQB.com. “My name may be Katz, but I wasn’t taking any chances.”
The Jets’ own religion-themed scheduling request received less divine intervention.
With Rosh Hashanah set to begin at sundown on Sept. 13 — the first Sunday of the NFL season — the Jets asked the league to open on the road, so as not to force the team’s Jewish fans to miss the game or risk being on their way home from the game when sunset occurs at 7:09 p.m.
The league did not acquiesce, scheduling the Jets to host the Browns.