Next commissioner will face many challenges

The NFL's next commissioner will have to be a combination of Pete Rozelle and Paul Tagliabue, writes John Clayton.

Updated: March 23, 2006, 11:47 AM ET
By John Clayton | ESPN.com

The NFL's unprecedented success as a sports league was no accident.

The NFL has had the right commissioners in place at the right times. Pete Rozelle was a visionary. He saw the bright lights of television and propelled pro football into an age of growth that made Sundays and Monday night a permanent fixture on fans' schedules.

Paul Tagliabue was the right man to replace him. He emerged from more than a decade of labor fights and found a way to preside over 17 years of peace. Owners ...

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