Jerry Jones Threatens to Sue NFL Owners Over Roger Goodell Contract: How We Got Here

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones’ final day as an ad hoc, non-voting member of the NFL’s compensation committee was an eventful one.

That was last Thursday, and it was then that Jones advised the six voting members—Atlanta owner Arthur Blank, Kansas City’s Clark Hunt, New England’s Robert Kraft, Houston’s Bob McNair, the Giants’ John Mara, Pittsburgh’s Art Rooney—that he had retained powerful attorney David Boies and had papers drawn up. And if they wouldn’t listen to him on commissioner Roger Goodell’s extension, he’d sue them.

Jones was vague about what the basis of his suit would be, but clear that he planned to challenged the committee’s authority. And so it was that the NFL’s most powerful owner declared war on the league’s chief executive, via legal action against the committee empowered to extend Goodell’s reign.

“When it came to league (office) staff, or Roger’s compensation, he had some other owners saying that he was right,” said one source connected to the committee and the commissioner. “Or when he said ‘the deal shouldn’t be structured that way’ or that the league had gone beyond its mandate as a sports league on off-field issues, there were people agreeing. But when he sues the owners, that’s crossing the Rubicon.”

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