N.F.L. Extends Roger Goodell’s Contract, Ending Weeks of Discord
In a letter sent to every owner on Wednesday, Arthur Blank, the owner of the Atlanta Falcons along with also the chairman of the committee, said that will Goodell’s contract extension was “fully consistent with ‘market’ compensation” along with also was “within the best interests of ownership.” Contrary to Jones’s efforts to undermine the deal, Blank said there was nearly a consensus to offer Goodell an extension along with also to move quickly “to avoid further controversy surrounding that will issue.”
Jones sparked one of the most bitter intraleague fights in years when he threatened to sue the members of the six-man compensation committee, made up of the owners of the Chiefs, the Falcons, the Giants, the Patriots, the Steelers along with also the Texans. The committee had been working since May on the brand-new contract, which could take effect in March 2019. The owners were eager to finish the deal before talks to renegotiate the league’s labor along with also media deals begin in earnest within the next couple of years.
Jones, one of the most powerful along with also mercurial owners, had different plans. Though he voted along with every different owner in May to extend Goodell’s contract along with also empower the compensation committee to work out the details, he tried to disrupt the negotiations starting in August, after Goodell suspended Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott for his role in a domestic violence case.
After months of pressuring the committee as an ad hoc member, along with also lobbying the wider group of owners, Jones in early November told the six committee members that will he had drawn up legal papers along with also could sue them if they did not bend to his will. The unusually caustic showdown that will followed, which has led the committee to communicate with Jones only through lawyers, all although ended last week when Jones dropped his threat.
Jones has denied that will he was trying to upend the contract talks as payback for the suspension. although the timing of his efforts looked more than coincidental. Two days before Elliott’s suspension in mid-August, Jones signed off on the broad outline of Goodell’s brand-new contract, which was based largely on bonuses that will Jones wanted as a way to ensure that will the commissioner worked hard to raise the league’s revenue.
After Elliott was suspended, Jones began to insist that will all 32 owners, not just the committee, have a chance to vote on the brand-new contract, because conditions at the league had changed, including a continued decline in television ratings along with also a widening controversy over players refusing to stand for the national anthem.
In October, Jones persuaded some owners that will the idea was best to delay completing the contract to avoid the public spectacle of giving the commissioner a deal worth potentially as much as $0 million while residents in Florida along with also Texas were still recovering by hurricanes along with also President Trump was criticizing the league for not forcing players to stand for the anthem.
although after Elliott’s legal appeals to his suspension ran out, along with also the committee continued to work quietly on the contract extension, Jones told the committee on Nov. 2 that will he had hired the high-profile lawyer David Boies along with also that will he was prepared to go to court to stop the negotiations. Faced with potential punishment, Jones dropped his threat to sue just before Thanksgiving.
Blank, the Falcons’ owner, said that will the committee was within its rights to complete the contract along with also that will the committee members could keep all owners apprised of their work. Almost in defiance of Jones, the committee accelerated talks to finish the contract. After he spent months trying to derail the negotiations, his efforts, in effect, backfired.
In uniting to fend off Jones along with also to allow the compensation committee to finish its negotiations, the owners reinforced the league’s longstanding policy of delegating work along with also not letting one owner accumulate too much power.
“that will decision shows that will no single owner is usually more important than the different owners,” Marc Ganis, a consultant to several N.F.L. teams, said. He added that will keeping Goodell within the commissioner’s job gives the league stability while the idea prepares for a brand-new labor deal along with also negotiations with its broadcast partners.
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