Jones sparked just about the most bitter intraleague fights in years when he threatened to sue the people of the six-man reimbursement committee, made up of the owners of the Chiefs, the Falcons, the Giants, the Patriots, the Steelers and the Texans. The committee have been working since Might on the new contract, which would take impact in March 2019. The owners were eager to finish the deal before foretells renegotiate the league’s labor and press deals start in earnest in the next couple of years.
Jones, just about the most powerful and mercurial owners, had other ideas. Though he voted along with almost every other owner in Might to extend Goodell’s contract and empower the reimbursement committee to work out the details, he tried to disrupt the negotiations beginning in August, after Goodell suspended Cowboys working back again Ezekiel Elliott for his position in a domestic violence circumstance.
After months of pressuring the committee as an random member, and lobbying the wider group of owners, Jones in early on November told the six committee members that he previously used legal papers and would sue them if they did not bend to his will. The unusually caustic showdown that implemented, which has led the committee to talk to Jones only through attorneys, all but ended the other day when Jones dropped his threat.
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Jones offers denied that he was trying to upend the contract talks seeing as payback for the suspension. However the timing of his initiatives looked a lot more than coincidental. Two times before Elliott’s suspension in mid-August, Jones signed off on the wide outline of Goodell’s new contract, which was based largely on bonuses that Jones wanted as a way to make certain that the commissioner worked hard to improve the league’s revenue.
After Elliott was suspended, Jones began to insist that all 32 owners, not only 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 and a widening controversy over players refusing to stand for the national anthem.
In October, Jones persuaded plenty of owners that it was better to delay completing the contract in order to avoid the general public spectacle of giving the commissioner a deal worthy of potentially as much as $200 million while residents in Florida and Texas were even now recovering from hurricanes and President Trump was criticizing the league for not forcing players to stand for the anthem.
But after Elliott’s legal appeals to his suspension ran out, and the committee continued to work quietly on the contract extension, Jones told the committee about Nov. 2 that he previously hired the high-profile lawyer David Boies and that he was prepared to go to court to stop the negotiations. Faced with potential punishment, Jones dropped his threat to sue right before Thanksgiving.
Arthur Blank, who owns the Falcons and the chairman of the committee, said that the committee was within its privileges to complete the contract and that the committee people would keep all owners apprised of their work. Nearly in defiance of Jones, the committee accelerated foretells finish the contract. After he spent a few months striving to derail the negotiations, Jones’s initiatives in effect backfired.
In a letter sent to every owner on Wednesday, Blank explained that Goodell’s contract extension “is fully consistent with ‘promote’ compensation” and is “in the very best interests of ownership.” Unlike Jones’s initiatives to derail the deal, Blank said there was nearly a consensus to provide Goodell an extension and to move quickly “in order to avoid even more controversy surrounding this matter.”