Dallas Cowboys’ Jerry Jones amongst homeowners attempting to hijack Roger Goodell’s proposed contract extension


10:13 AM ET

  • Chris Mortensen


    NFL reporter
    • ESPN Senior NFL Analyst
    • Joined ESPN in 1991
    • George Polk Award winner; Twice nominated for Pulitzer Prize
  • Adam Schefter


    ESPN Senior Author
    • ESPN NFL Insider
    • Joined ESPN in 2009
    • Former president of the Professional Soccer Writers of America and the writer of 4 books

The Cowboys’ Jerry Jones was a number one voice amongst 17 NFL homeowners on a convention name Thursday that mentioned the opportunity of halting commissioner Roger Goodell’s pending contract extension, sources concerned with the decision informed ESPN.

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There’s a rising distinction of opinion amongst homeowners on Goodell’s general efficiency as commissioner, based on sources. The homeowners on Thursday’s convention name are usually sad with Goodell and the NFL’s entrance workplace for quite a lot of causes, together with the participant protests staged in the course of the nationwide anthem, the problems concerning the relocation of groups to Los Angeles and the league’s dealing with of the Ray Rice home violence case, based on sources.

“You aren’t getting to have this many messes through the years like Roger has had and survive it,” mentioned one proprietor on the decision.

Regardless of the unhappiness, this group of homeowners is skeptical that it will likely be capable of outright hearth Goodell, based on sources. The NFL would wish 24 homeowners to approve Goodell’s ouster. However one particular person concerned on this week’s convention name in contrast the NFL’s present state of affairs with Goodell to Main League Baseball’s state of affairs with Fay Vincent in September 1992, when baseball homeowners voted 18-9 to power him out, and substitute him with Bud Selig.

“There’s, and was, one thing that is a matter,” a league supply who was not on the convention name and did not study it till Saturday night time mentioned. “I might be very shocked about wanting to alter Roger. I might be shocked about that.”

But for all of the distinguished individuals who do help Goodell, a contract that was purported to be accomplished in September has nonetheless not been finalized as November approaches.

“Possibly Arthur [Blank, the head of the compensation committee] and that committee suppose they’re on observe,” an proprietor mentioned about Goodell’s extension talks. “However they’ve much more resistance than they counted on — and possibly they do not know how the resistance is rising as we communicate.”

Goodell and the league are at a crucial juncture, and people across the NFL have mentioned they will sense that. And this was earlier than Texans proprietor Bob McNair was quoted in an ESPN The Journal story saying, “We will not let the inmates run the jail,” inflicting some Texans gamers to depart the power on Friday. Sources mentioned they’re discussing the opportunity of staging an illustration for Sunday’s recreation in Seattle.

“We simply do not have sufficient drawback solvers,” mentioned one other NFL proprietor. “We gotta get it proper or we’re simply going to let it burn. Final time I felt like this was earlier than the 1993 CBA settlement. That was simply miserable, and Paul Tagliabue and Gene [Upshaw] stepped up and saved it in a spectacular manner. We do not have that feeling proper now.”

The homeowners’ most up-to-date conferences in New York, the place a lot was mentioned however little was determined, as Seth Wickersham and Don Van Natta reported of their ESPN The Journal story, led homeowners to final week’s convention name that detailed among the points they’ve with the league and Goodell.

“That was our recurring theme, that there is not any management,” mentioned one other government accustomed to Thursday’s convention name. “Everybody [in the league office] is attempting to win the most recent information cycle, and there is not any long-term imaginative and prescient. It is simply, ‘How can we decrease the dangerous headlines, maximize the income, and transfer on to the subsequent day?’ And there is an rising frustration to that strategy.”

McNair additionally expressed frustration with the league’s management when he sought to make clear his “inmates” remark in an announcement launched Saturday.

“I used to be referring to the connection between the league workplace and staff homeowners and the way they’ve been making vital strategic choices affecting our league with out ample enter from possession over the previous few years,” McNair mentioned in an excerpt from the badertion.

McNair’s phrases put a distinguished title to earlier tales during which nameless sources mentioned that there’s a degree of unhappiness with the league workplace below Goodell’s management, though he didn’t particularly title the commissioner in his badertion.

Sources have beforehand mentioned Jones has tried to face in the best way of any extension for Goodell. Final month, ESPN reported that Jones was impeding the progress of contract negotiations aimed toward an extension for Goodell. “If not for Jerry,” one proprietor mentioned final month in regard to the contract negotiations, “this deal could be carried out.”

Clean, the chairman of the compensation committee and the purpose man for negotiations on Goodell’s extension, mentioned he invited Jones as an “advert hoc” committee adviser. Clean mentioned there stays “particulars to finish” on the extension for Goodell’s time period, however he continues to specific optimism.

A supply mentioned Clean was not conscious nor invited to take part in final week’s convention name, as was the case with at the least three different homeowners contacted this weekend.

Sources declined to establish the particular groups represented on the decision, however identified that the variety of members was additional proof of the rising unrest after the earlier week’s conferences in New York.

“There was good communication that we had been going to have this subsequent dialogue … it was an appointment amongst homeowners who’ve severe issues, ” mentioned one proprietor. “Simply because the league workplace is not concerned or sure different homeowners, that does not imply this stuff do not occur.”

When requested whether or not the NFL is on the fringe of a cliff with its mounting troubles and the uncertainty concerning the way forward for Goodell’s commissionership, the proprietor countered that it was a “nice alternative.”

“We’re not on the sting of destruction,” the proprietor mentioned. “It is a chance. It creates actual power and it creates a terrific alternative to get our management proper going ahead. You watch. We are going to come out of this as a stronger league and our reputation will come again and enhance.”

There was no agency appointment made for one more name among the many group, the proprietor added, however he mentioned he had little doubt the dialogue will proceed.

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