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League, Redskins talked about salary cap controversy on Tuesday

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As the Redskins were rounding up a bunch of receivers on Tuesday (they landed Pierre Garçon and Josh Morgan, and they’re working on Eddie Royal), the team also was trying to plead its case with the league office regarding Monday’s decision to strip $36 million in cap space from the team for treating the “uncapped year” of 2010 too literally.

Per a league source, the Redskins engaged in a conference call with the league office regarding the situation.

And the conversation, we’re told, included the league conceding to G.M. Bruce Allen that the Redskins violated no rules and did nothing wrong.  The league explained that the Redskins’ actions (and the Cowboys’) “affected competitive balance.”

As we’ve previously mentioned, both in print and during Tuesday’s PFT Live, what about the teams that opted to underspend in the year with no salary cap or salary floor?  Those teams also necessarily affected competitive balance by choosing to be uncompetitive.

The bottom line is that every team could have done what the Cowboys and Redskins did.  The notion that not every team had the cash flow to do it, which was advanced on Tuesday’s NFL Live by former Colts Vice Chairman Bill Polian, is more than a little misleading.  The Cowboys, for example, opted to give receiver Miles Austin $17 million in 2010.  The Cowboys characterized it as base salary and not as a signing bonus to limit the impact in future years under the cap.  That’s not an issue of cash flow.  And any team giving a player a signing bonus in 2010 could have used this tactic instead.

Besides, without a salary cap, teams with greater cash flow have the right to try to disrupt competitive balance by spending more money, even if it usually doesn’t work.  (Indeed, the Cowboys and Redskins failed to get to the postseason in 2010 or 2011.)  A cap is put in place to prevent the spend-to-win arms race, and the cap was removed in 2010 to give the owners an incentive to replace the CBA before risking that teams would try to buy a championship in the uncapped year.

What many in the media are missing is that this entire controversy proves the league engaged in collusion in 2010, and that the Redskins and Cowboys are suffering the consequences now for refusing two years ago to participate in a violation of the labor laws.

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82 Responses to “League, Redskins talked about salary cap controversy on Tuesday”
  1. waussau says: Mar 14, 2012 4:10 AM

    Good thing Bruce Allen called and basically spoke for the bumbling slack jawed Jerra Jones. You’re welcome Cowboys.

  2. jagerbmb says: Mar 14, 2012 4:13 AM

    “What many in the media are missing is that this entire controversy proves the league engaged in collusion in 2010, and that the Redskins and Cowboys are suffering the consequences now for refusing two years ago to participate in a violation of the labor laws.”

    And this is a huge problem that doesn’t need to go away. No matter my personal thoughts concerning the Redskins or Cowboys, this is just plain wrong and the precedent set is unfathomable. Spot on Mike.

  3. mogul218 says: Mar 14, 2012 4:20 AM

    Sound to me like the league is backpedaling. This whole thing is starting to look like Giants brass trying to cripple the competition in the NFC east. Chicago is guilty of the same thing the Skins and Cowboys did but yet no penalty. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.

  4. footballfanman says: Mar 14, 2012 4:22 AM

    The fact that the fans of all these other teams sit back in delight as we get shang-haied by the league is funny to me. We did not cheat yet our whole plan is derailed. I really believe the Redskins would have signed Vincent Jackson and Peirre Garcon. I still like are moves but now i’m counting on Hankerson to be a number one receiver or at least a redzone threat.

  5. larondontlikeugly says: Mar 14, 2012 4:23 AM

    If Vinny Cerrato was still GM, he would have cut half the roster after hearing Shefter’s report, not signed any FAs today, and probably traded a few more future draft picks to ‘steal’ Ochocinco from the Pats.

  6. tbtrojan says: Mar 14, 2012 4:29 AM

    “the league conceding to G.M. Bruce Allen that the Redskins violated no rules and did nothing wrong.”

    As much as I hate to say the league should just back away from this and give the cap space back.
    If the league admits there was no wrong doing they have no grounds for punishment.

    Then again this is GODells world now, a place where he will punish people first then think of a reason why later. I can’t believe that clown got an extension.

  7. kjm18 says: Mar 14, 2012 4:54 AM

    There is absolutely no way the league said that to Allen. Period. Someone is stretching the truth in the Redskins front office.

  8. beelicker says: Mar 14, 2012 5:00 AM

    >>> teams with greater cash flow have the right to try to disrupt competitive balance by spending more money, even if it usually doesn’t work. (Indeed, the Cowboys and Redskins failed to get to the postseason in 2010 or 2011.) <<<

    While this is quite true, it seems to me the teams are not being punished for unwisely spending that money un an uncapped year, but rather the fact they used cap-circumventing accounting devices during that uncapped period – in spending that money – which further opened up "unfair" extra cap room for THIS year & beyond, which ARE years covered by the new CBA & thus affecting "competitive balance" also for this year & beyond.

    Sinking bonus money in one-time charge offs would circumvent otherwise normal cap amortization going forward, which would likewise affect competitive balance going forward under the new CBA.

    They're not being penalized for spending the money then, but rather more the hangover from the unique abuse of these cap circumventing devices during the uncapped period now going forward?

  9. couldntthinkofaname says: Mar 14, 2012 5:03 AM

    Not a fan of either team, but this is ridiculous. If there was no cap, they didn’t do anything wrong. Drop it, NFL and give these teams their cap space back. And apologize while you’re at it. C’mon man.

  10. truthserum4u says: Mar 14, 2012 5:10 AM

    But the league directive/warning wasn’t telling teams to not spend; it was telling them not to dump salaries into the uncapped year, because it was against the spirit of the agreement of the expiring CBA as it pertained to the uncapped year. A subtle but significant difference. Notice other teams were over the cap but didn’t take part in salary dumping so they weren’t punished. The league also warned all of the teams that there could be retroactive consequences.

  11. torothebronxbull says: Mar 14, 2012 5:10 AM

    Mogul, what does this have to do with the Giants and their front office? It’s not like we called the NFL and said, hey, the Cowboys and Redskins both abused the non-salary cap season…I think you’re just jealous that we were able to win a Super Bowl without having to throw millions of extra dollars into our payroll to do it…Unlike the Cowboys and Redskins who took full advantage of it, had payrolls that went through the roof and STILL SUCKED. Quit hatin’ on BIG BLUE. We the champs, and didn’t have to abuse the non-salary cap season to do it.

  12. defscottyb says: Mar 14, 2012 5:12 AM

    Absurd… It’s like announcing an all you can eat buffet, then telling the patrons as they walk in if you eat too much you will pay a penalty later. Then, you get the bill 2 years later for it… Huh??? Makes absolutely no sense at all. It’s like that saying “Take your time but hurry up” HUH???

  13. defscottyb says: Mar 14, 2012 5:14 AM

    And… as a die-hard Redskins fan I fully agree with the Cowboys too. They did nothing wrong either… absolutely absurd.

  14. waltdawg says: Mar 14, 2012 5:15 AM

    This is a sad day in the NFL….Very socilistic now. Please fix this.!

  15. beelicker says: Mar 14, 2012 5:15 AM

    If that’s the case, perhaps an appeal might lead to a penalty reformulation more along the lines of what would have been ‘regular’ bonus amortizations specific to the particular offending contracts, thus sinking the ‘normal’ part of the caphit(s) back into the uncapped year & further spreading it normally over the rest of the deal(s)?

  16. stanklepoot says: Mar 14, 2012 5:15 AM

    “the league conceding to G.M. Bruce Allen that the Redskins violated no rules and did nothing wrong.”

    As much as I hate to say the league should just back away from this and give the cap space back.
    If the league admits there was no wrong doing they have no grounds for punishment.

    Then again this is GODells world now, a place where he will punish people first then think of a reason why later. I can’t believe that clown got an extension.
    _____________________________
    You’d have a very good point if this was the league’s doing. It’s not. The league office did not file the initial complaint. The other owners did. Put simply, the Cowboys and Redskins aren’t being punished by the league for violating any specific rules, they’re being punished by the other owners for initially agreeing to collude with them and then stabbing them in the back. Snyder and Jones did what they did not out of some aversion to colluding (they do it all the time), but because they though the other owners would never make them pay for it, since doing so would be an implicit admission of collusion. Unfortunately for the Redskins and Cowboys, now that there’s a new CBA and they settled the anti-trust case with the players, that admission doesn’t hurt them. That means they’re both willing and able to punish the offending owners. Remember, the truly important decisions aren’t made by the league office, they’re voted on by the owners (in some cases unofficially). So, going out of your way to upset your fellow owners can easily come back to hurt you.

  17. defscottyb says: Mar 14, 2012 5:19 AM

    2010 was an UNCAPPED year meaning there was NO SALARY CAP! Enough said! Should be NO penalty at all. Godell is completely out of order with this one. Can’t change the rules and penalize teams after the fact… I’m done.

  18. motorbreath2000 says: Mar 14, 2012 5:26 AM

    The salary cap was instituted to help ensure “competitive balance.” While I agree that the Cowboys and Redskins did not violate any rules, all that they did was become the Yankees and Red Sox for a year in order to buy future cap space. This gave them an unfair advantage, and it also increases spending on players prematurely. Obviously, the more money spent on players, the higher the costs of tickets, merchandise, and television broadcasting. The money has to come from somewhere – us fans. What the league is trying to do is to promote healthy growth and promote a competitive balance (which sets the NFL apart from other leagues and is a reason as to why the league is the most popular in America). While there likely aren’t any rules to allow the league to penalize those teams (and why aren’t they penalizing the teams on the other end of the spectrum?), not addressing the issue still would negatively affect the competitive balance.

    As to collusion, teams and fans should be just as upset about the teams under-spending during the un-chopped/floored year as those egregiously over-spending.

  19. defscottyb says: Mar 14, 2012 5:27 AM

    Next thing you know it will be “2 hand touch” on the QB at all times… Now I’m really done venting. I miss the days when Jack Tatum played with 2 fake casts and leveled players with forearms haha. We’ll, ok… fake casts should be banned, stick-um too but that’s it. I guess I just like real NFL football and tired of all this political bs, just play will ya. And, if your team doesn’t have the money to get good players, oh well and waaaaaaaah, do something about it. Not everyone can be the Redskins or the Cowboys or Yankees (I know this is PFT) and I hate the Cowboys and not a Yankee fan. But, if you have the means then do what gives you a better team and quit crying. Furthermore, I haven’t seen the Skins, Yankees or Cowboys win anything lately anyway. Jeeeez

  20. truthserum4u says: Mar 14, 2012 5:30 AM

    Everyone understands the term “competitive balance” refers to gaining an unfair advantage. Teams under spending are not gaining an unfair advantage thus they really aren’t affecting the competitive balance.

  21. torothebronxbull says: Mar 14, 2012 5:35 AM

    Now, I am in agreement that NO SALARY CAP means NO SALARY CAP…but trying to say this is ANY FAULT of the Giant front office is LUDICROUS! Now, had you said the Eagles, that might be a lil bit more believable…After signing this “so called dream team” to who knows how many millions of dollars and not even make the playoffs…Either way, no one should be penalized period…but it’s definitely not the Giants front office bringing this to the NFL’s attention…don’t confuse us with the diarrhea of the mouth NY Jets…Long Live the CHAMPS!! go BIG BLUE!

  22. CKL says: Mar 14, 2012 5:37 AM

    Stanklepoot is almost always the voice of reason whether I agree with him or not. Thanks, dude. :)
    The fact the NFLPA agreed to this is quite puzzling but there is probably a lot to this story that we don’t know (and probably never will). No one wants to see the sausage made on deals like this.

  23. torothebronxbull says: Mar 14, 2012 5:46 AM

    Mogul, we don’t need to cripple the NFC East. I think you’re confusing us with the Eagles…They’re the ones who need any edge they can possibly get to try and make a championship run…Think about it, Cowboys, 5 Super Bowls, Giants, 4 Super Bowls, Redskins, 3 Super Bowls….Eagles, NONE!

  24. gweez76 says: Mar 14, 2012 6:06 AM

    Keep preaching man.

    Love for you to get a response from the League office about those who didn’t spend at all. Particularly Tampa who were going through crisis in their balloon payment for Man United. Who now are gobbling up the biggest FAs with major player removed from the race.

  25. dccowboy says: Mar 14, 2012 6:23 AM

    I’m still confused by this ‘front loading’ thing.

    The Bears ‘front loaded’ 37% of Julius Peppers $91 million dollar 6 year deal into 2010

    The Cowboys ‘front loaded’ 31% of Miles Austin’s $54 million dollar contract into 2010.

    Why exactly did the Cowboys threaten ‘competitive imbalance’ with Austin’s contract that required a $10 million penalty and the Bears contract with Peppers did not?

  26. staffordsyear says: Mar 14, 2012 6:36 AM

    Glad it isnt my lions cause we be broke!

  27. rickvaldez says: Mar 14, 2012 6:51 AM

    Its not a unfair advantage. Every team in the NFL had the right to do what the Redskins, Cowboys, Raiders and Bears did.

    If they other owners choose not to then oh well but dont complain because no rules were broken.

  28. rickvaldez says: Mar 14, 2012 6:54 AM

    Was it written in the new CBA that any team that affected competitive balance would be punished?

  29. jenniferxxx says: Mar 14, 2012 6:59 AM

    The Skins and Cowboys should sell their franchises and get out. Obviously they don’t like how the business is run. Let someone own the teams who’s with the program.

  30. weaponx73 says: Mar 14, 2012 7:13 AM

    Mogul where does it say anything about the Giants? They aren’t mentioned anywhere in the article and I doubt they are doing much complaining after winning the super bowl. Stop whining about the Giants like a little girl. It’s embarising kind of like your team.

  31. eagleswin says: Mar 14, 2012 7:16 AM

    What many in the media are missing is that this entire controversy proves the league engaged in collusion in 2010, and that the Redskins and Cowboys are suffering the consequences now for refusing two years ago to participate in a violation of the labor laws.

    ———————————————

    The NFLPA has already signed off on it. Without that the league wouldn’t have moved forward. There’s no case to be made. The owners are legally covered. The correct palms have been greased.

    This is an internal manner where the owners are censuring 2 of their own. My understanding it is that isn’t about how much they spent, it’s about the way they spent it, using frowned upon devices that affected the salary cap favorably for them in future years.

    Let’s keep in mind that the skins and cowboys have not been fined actual money. There is no money for them to recover. The owners are using a salary cap device to offset a salary cap device that the cowboys/redskins used.

  32. eagleswin says: Mar 14, 2012 7:16 AM

    What many in the media are missing is that this entire controversy proves the league engaged in collusion in 2010, and that the Redskins and Cowboys are suffering the consequences now for refusing two years ago to participate in a violation of the labor laws.

    ———————————————

    The NFLPA has already signed off on it. Without that the league wouldn’t have moved forward. There’s no case to be made. The owners are legally covered. The correct palms have been greased.

    This is an internal manner where the owners are censuring 2 of their own. My understanding it is that isn’t about how much they spent, it’s about the way they spent it, using frowned upon devices that affected the salary cap favorably for them in future years.

    Let’s keep in mind that the skins and cowboys have not been fined actual money. There is no money for them to recover. The owners are using a salary cap device to offset a salary cap device that the cowboys/redskins used.

  33. cuffhimbanano says: Mar 14, 2012 7:18 AM

    The DC team need only to keep signing free agents to put this issue to a head. Once the league voids a newly signed contract on the grounds that it puts the DC team above their penalty induced cap number the player’s association will be forced to pursue the matter in court with a charge of collusion.

  34. canemh says: Mar 14, 2012 7:24 AM

    Sound to me like the league is backpedaling. This whole thing is starting to look like Giants brass trying to cripple the competition in the NFC east.

    ======================================

    how is this the giants fault?? all they do is win super bowls when noonelse in the division can even get to the playoffs

  35. wethog66 says: Mar 14, 2012 7:28 AM

    @torothebronxbull

    But the horrible Skins beat your Big Blue not once, but twice last year. And both games were not even close. How do you explain that? I am sure you will try.

    As a Skins fan the apparent lack of facts to support the NFL’s decision is what is frustrating? Just cryptic press releases. For such a stiff penalty one would think Goodell would explain things personally. Guess his silence says it all.

  36. skinspop102 says: Mar 14, 2012 7:28 AM

    Good on PFT for keeping this story alive. Finally other media outlets are starting to follow suit.

    What kills me though, is that the NFL isn’t going to change it, they have too much money and too much power to care.

    They know eventually the story will die, and they will have gotten away with this travesty.

  37. blackqbwhiterb says: Mar 14, 2012 7:32 AM

    The very same owners in several small markets that say these 2 overspent to gain an advantage in future years (now) are, now, at an advantage because they UNDERSPENT in a year with no salary MINIMUM…..but this is America, and if you’re rich you get punished for it. Not to mention Mara sits on the committee. If Snyder or Jerrah meted out such punishment to the Giants, imagine the uproar!

  38. starfan79 says: Mar 14, 2012 7:34 AM

    I like how the league has not come out to explain itself yet. C’mon goodell, your hard and swift when it comes to making judgments but not so good on the explanations. Ass clown

  39. iikanji says: Mar 14, 2012 7:34 AM

    Both teams have every right to feel shafted. & shame on the league …
    Both teams should have been APPLAUDED for putting money into their teams & trying to maximise their fans’ viewing experience/pleasure!
    On the flipside you have teams consistently not spending & not trying to put on a show for their fans who’ve stood by them through mediocrity … & they get off jack free?! (& now getting even MORE money?!?!)
    I’m not a fan of either team here … But as much as some may ridicule Jerry & Snyder, both had the interest of their franchises, both in terms of trying to win & putting out a good product for their fanbases … Kudos for that …

  40. tundey says: Mar 14, 2012 7:38 AM

    The NFLPA is very stupid to go with this ruling. Of all the 32 owners in the league, who is most likely to spend the $46 million if not Jerry Jones and Dan Snyder? Do they really think giving $1 million extra to some of these teams that don’t spend will make they spend?

  41. kokomike says: Mar 14, 2012 7:39 AM

    This is wrong on so many fronts. It was a no cap year. Collusion to restrict spending is illegal, and that evidently took place. At least the six times teams were warned indicates so. No rules were broken. No competitive advantage was gained. The penalties are anti-competitive. The timing was absurd. And more. I can’t believe a court of law would side with the NFL on this one.

  42. musicman495 says: Mar 14, 2012 7:40 AM

    torothebronxbull says: Mar 14, 2012 5:10 AM

    Mogul, what does this have to do with the Giants and their front office? It’s not like we called the NFL and said, hey, the Cowboys and Redskins both abused the non-salary cap season…
    —————————————–
    Your owner is the chairman of the NFL management committee that is providing the selective enforcement and penalty assessment for this “violation” of a non-rule rule. He and his fellow owners are breaking the law in doing this to the Cowboys and Redskins, and would be sued by the Players Union if they were not compromised by the fact that they are being strong armed by the league over the amount of the 2012 salary cap.

  43. urfinished says: Mar 14, 2012 7:41 AM

    Goodell reaching most hated commish status in record time. Okay, he was probably already there…but this adds longevity.

  44. eaglesw00t says: Mar 14, 2012 7:55 AM

    As an Eagles fan, I am anti-Cowboy and Redskin by nature, and I want to see them both fail, no matter what.

    But this whole scenario reeks. If it wasnt a written rule, and youre punishing them for violating some “word of mouth warning”, then that is just wrong.

    Unfortunately, the NFL cant back down now. I dont know why they bothered trying to enforce this non rule in the first place.

    Whoever had this great idea should be fired. And if D Smith was in on it, and agrees with it, he should be fired as well.

  45. dikshuttle says: Mar 14, 2012 7:55 AM

    @beelicker: How can you use a cap-circumventing device when there’s no cap?

    FAIL.

  46. opinionated says: Mar 14, 2012 7:56 AM

    mogul218 says:
    Mar 14, 2012 4:20 AM
    Sound to me like the league is backpedaling. This whole thing is starting to look like Giants brass trying to cripple the competition in the NFC east. Chicago is guilty of the same thing the Skins and Cowboys did but yet no penalty. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
    ______________________________

    Seriously? Cripple the competition? You’re crippled already! We won the super bowl and the Redskins and Cowboys were the bottom 2 in the division. The redskins have finished last in the division for 4 years straight! Our only competition is Philly (the ones who didn’t try to cheat or pay bounties to take other players out of the game). I love how the Redskins are in trouble for one thing after another but it’s never their fault! It’s the Giants fault. bahahahaha

  47. east96st says: Mar 14, 2012 7:58 AM

    “This whole thing is starting to look like Giants brass trying to cripple the competition in the NFC east.”

    You caught us. We’re so jealous of all the Super Bowls you guys have won the past 15 years. It’s killing us inside.

  48. fan1001 says: Mar 14, 2012 8:11 AM

    Whether you’re in agreement with the proposition that the owners had an agreement amongst themselves to not “dump salaries” into the uncapped year–you are missing the bigger point. The fact is that every owner sat in a room and agreed to NOT violate the spirit of the cap in 2010. If the Cowboys and/or Redskins did not want to follow this agreement, they should have indicated that to the other owners! The basis of the competitive advantage occurs when the Cowboys and Redskins say, “sure, we’re in agreement with that” while other teams conform their behavior to the agreement, and then go out and do the opposite. The other owners are upset, and rightfully so, as these teams fooled them by saying one thing and doing another. If say, another team in that division, say the Eagles, had been told by the Cowboys and Redskins that they were not on board with the agreement, then the Eagles could have/would have done the same thing. Competitive balance is supported by the notion and opportunity for everyone to follow the same set of rules. The idea that you disagree with those rules is not the point. Lying or deception is. The Redskins and Cowboys should have told the other owners that they disagreed with the “rule” and would do whatever they wanted. They didn’t because their intention was to gain a competitive advantage by saying “sure” and then doing what was best for them, not the league as a whole. Give ‘em a point or two for trying…but they got caught…and now should pay the price. You might be against the “collusion” as you call it…but are you in favor of deception, manipulation and outright lying? That’s what the other owners are pissed about. The Redskins and Cowboys should have had the balls to say to the other owners at the time, that they would not follow their agreement. They didn’t.

  49. brianjoates says: Mar 14, 2012 8:12 AM

    There is alot going on in regards to off the field NFL issues, Roger needs to hit the interview circuit and start doing some explaining.

  50. hendawg21 says: Mar 14, 2012 8:14 AM

    Well Andrew Brandt of ESPN business stated yesterday two contracts which cost the Skins the $36 mil were in fact not 2010 but 2009 deals.

    And since the Lord of the NFL and his goons have stated there was no wrong doing per se then reduce the penalty to half to appease everyone i’d take $18 mil to split over 2 years as opposed to $36 mil, btw did they tell you the call was being recorded to use at a later date in the law suit Danny and Jerruh are going to bring???

  51. oranjellojones says: Mar 14, 2012 8:27 AM

    Epic fail fan1001. You assume that Jones and Snyder ever agreed to play along and you base this on nothing more than your imagination…zero facts. This makes no sense at all especially when considering the fact that they were supposedly warned six times about this. If they agreed to go along then there wouldn’t be a need to warn them. No, what’s more likely is they both balked from the outset, argued over it and now a line has been drawn in the sand.

    It is YOU who is obviously missing the bigger point…Collusion is illegal for a reason and the story is far from over in regards to this. Expect big time repercussions for the NFL if they choose to pursue this.

  52. thehairychestsportsblog says: Mar 14, 2012 8:37 AM

    When the football team you own is headquartered in the richest county in the United States (Loudon VA) you have a ton of cash to spend. I am sure the Jags, Chiefs and Rams lead this charge. No matter how bad the team has been the Redskins are a cash cow and always will be. We dont need the Taj Mahal stadium to prove it.

  53. cliffordc05 says: Mar 14, 2012 8:39 AM

    The league did participate in collusion. The key word here is league. Another key word is competition. If the Seahawks, with the league’s richest owner, had decided to load up on contracts that year; nobody could have outspent them. Jones and Snyder are two high profile owners who operate their teams in a manner that seems to get them both plenty of media time. Just because they are so completely inept that they wasted money on players who didn’t produce does not mean they should be rewarded for their attempted deception. I agree with fan1001 who points out that they simply didn’t have the balls to tell the league and other owners that they would not be bound by an informal agreement.

  54. mpayne12 says: Mar 14, 2012 8:46 AM

    @east96 just because the giants won a few superbowls dosn’t mean they no longer consider the cowboys and redskins to be threats. Need i remind you the skins beat the giants twice last year? and that was with rex grossman. Yeah I think this is exactly about Mara trying to keep the giants on top.

  55. hendawg21 says: Mar 14, 2012 8:49 AM

    fan1001 instead including your entire rant i’ll just address it:

    How do you know that the Cowboys and Redskins in said meeting of owners didn’t say we don’t agree or want to go along? None of us were there so it’s quite possible they did voice their disagreements against collusion…

  56. east96st says: Mar 14, 2012 8:56 AM

    “But the horrible Skins beat your Big Blue not once, but twice last year. And both games were not even close. How do you explain that? I am sure you will try.”

    What’s to explain? The Giants have won 9 out of the last 12 games vs the Skins. Yay, you won 2. Congrats. What did those losses cost the Giants? Nothing. They won the Super Bowl. What did those wins cost the Skins? Quite a lot. You had to give up a large number of picks to move up in the draft. So, who is the real loser here? The team holding the Lombardi? Or the one that had to give up it’s top draft picks and, now, part of it’s salary cap? Honestly, if I was a Skins/Dallas fan, I would be upset by this too. But to claim it’s all a Giants fueled conspiracy is nonsense. One, there’s no proof of that at all. Two, if you sit down at the poker table and the guy sitting across from you takes your life savings, whose fault is that, really? Skins and Dallas left themselves open for attack. Whether you think that attack is baseless or not, and you CAN argue that it is indeed baseless, the smart teams covered their you know whats.

  57. realitypolice says: Mar 14, 2012 8:56 AM

    truthserum4u says:
    Mar 14, 2012 5:10 AM
    But the league directive/warning wasn’t telling teams to not spend; it was telling them not to dump salaries into the uncapped year, because it was against the spirit of the agreement of the expiring CBA as it pertained to the uncapped year. A subtle but significant difference. Notice other teams were over the cap but didn’t take part in salary dumping so they weren’t punished. The league also warned all of the teams that there could be retroactive consequences.
    ===========================

    No significance to the difference whatsoever. The league is simply not authorized to give directives/warnings of any type as to what LEGAL means teams are to use or not to use.

    No other defense or explanation is relevant. Demanding that teams agree NOT to use loopholes legally available to them is collusion.

    We all understand why they did it. What you don’t seem to understand is that it doesn’t matter.

  58. thatsgoingtoleaveademarco says: Mar 14, 2012 8:58 AM

    There were alot more salary dumps than these contracts. Look at Peppers. Look at Winfield. Look at Shaub. Look at Jahri Evans. Look at Jason Peters. Look at every 2008, 2009 or 2010 top 5 rookie.

    The team that systematically dumped salary in the year were the Packers. The NFL is worried about systematic dumping and then punishes 3 contracts (Haynesworth, Hall and Austin).

    I could see the hard feelings if the Redskins and Cowboys had gone out and signed a bunch of high end players on 1 year deals. That did not happen. The first thing the Cowboys did after the lockout was create 40 million in dead money that most teams like the Saints and Browns had already cleared off the books during the lockout.

  59. weepingjebus says: Mar 14, 2012 8:58 AM

    “Competitive balance” = league wide mediocrity. We just had a team that went 9-7 and was actually outscored during the regular season end up winning the super bowl. It’s fun in the short term, but long term it gets hard to stomach when every year is a complete coin toss.

  60. fordman84 says: Mar 14, 2012 8:59 AM

    What sucks is that even if the NFL does come out and say “ok, no punishment”, the damage is still done. Both teams had this in mind when spending money on FA’s. Since this all came up 2 days before FA, it just smells fishy.

    I only hope that some team (read as Giants) planned it all out to spend every penny including the 1.6M extra and then would get slapped for going over the cap if it is lowered back.

  61. torothebronxbull says: Mar 14, 2012 9:08 AM

    @ Wethog66

    Is that what you base your season on as being a success? Beating BIG BLUE twice? LMAO! We were successful cuz we beat the Giants twice, finished last in the division, and missed the playoffs AGAIN…GREAT JOB Foreskins! GREAT JOB….Keep up the good work!

  62. FinFan68 says: Mar 14, 2012 9:09 AM

    I think your collusion hypothesis is far from proven. The owners did not conspire to cheat players out of money as so many seem to believe. Players still got paid that year. If there was actual collusion there would have been many more teams saving money by not spending. That didn’t happen. The cowboys and redskins cheated the competitive balance by paying players but making the pay only count much in the uncapped year. Other teams overspent but didn’t exploit the loophole and therefor went unpunished. The language was poorly written in the cba and was exploited. The league is mad and is trying to fix it after the fact. The league should have addressed the issue as the contracts were in the approval process. They could have told the teams to spread the bulk of the money over the length of the contracts and allowed restructuring if necessary after the cap. Miles and others still got their money the same way as before. The only issue was how that money was structured against the cap situation. Two or four owners cheated the other owners not any players. To think otherwise is speculative at best

  63. skinsfanwill says: Mar 14, 2012 9:11 AM

    The person to blame for all of this is the Chairman of the NFLPA Demaurice Smith. He took a chump deal from the league and in an effort to save his job, he let crap slide by. The players will soon find out what they have representing them.

  64. baddegg says: Mar 14, 2012 9:17 AM

    “And the conversation, we’re told, included the league conceding to G.M. Bruce Allen that the Redskins violated no rules and did nothing wrong.”

    ——

    But we’re still taking away your cap space. Wha? How can you concede that they did nothing wrong yet persist with the punishment. This makes even less sense than before!

  65. onodontbescurred says: Mar 14, 2012 9:21 AM

    what about all the other teams that did the exact same thing ie. bears with Julius peppers and his 30 M salary for the uncapped year. just seems unfair the redskins and cowboys are being singled out. 31 other teams would have dumped fat al and his contract

  66. opinionated says: Mar 14, 2012 9:27 AM

    mayne12 already has an excuse for another crap year from the redskins! what was the excuse for the last 4 years? how did the giants ruin those years for you?

    i absolutely love that the only thing redskins fans can say is that you beat us twice last year. and? you finished last in the division (as usual) and we won the super bowl. while losing those games was embarrasing at the time, it means nothing to us.

    the redskins are in trouble (again). move on and stop lashing out at a team that had nothing to do with the decsions YOUR team made. they made their bed…….

  67. numbskull111 says: Mar 14, 2012 9:29 AM

    Not only aren’t the Bears getting punished for the Peppers contract….they are getting rewarded for it. I believe they are one of the teams in line for the extra 1.6 million in cap space.

  68. FinFan68 says: Mar 14, 2012 9:30 AM

    dikshuttle says:
    Mar 14, 2012 7:55 AM
    @beelicker: How can you use a cap-circumventing device when there’s no cap?

    FAIL.
    ———
    It is not a FAIL for beelicker; your critical thinking skills have failed. Look at the Austin contract. He got $17M in BASE salary for 2010. That is absurd. The money is the same as a “normal” contract with signing bonus etc. but the cowboys put the money as base salary because that only counts against a cap for one year and in this case there was no cap to worry about being under. (cap-circumventing device) If that money was an up front bonus like normal, the amount of cap hit would have been spread evenly over the length of the contract. The 17 mil would have roughly been a cap hit of $4M in 2011, 2012, and 2013 but since they circumvented the system, they still get the player and basically no cap hit in the years they knew there would be one. That’s an extra 4mil advantage they shouldn’t have during free agency these years. It’s a scam against the other owners, not collusion against the players.

  69. canemh says: Mar 14, 2012 9:31 AM

    so john mara and every other owner besides the 2 shmucks in washington and dallas agree that there should be a fine but its the giants trying to keep the competition down. im sorry but your sorry ass owners dont need any help on that one.

    and for all u redskins fans–u do realize that there is something called a post season. yes u beat us 2 times so good for u. where did that get u–i know where it got big blue-super bowl.

  70. mrclutch973 says: Mar 14, 2012 9:34 AM

    This idea that the Giants brass is trying to ‘cripple’ the competition is hilarious. The Cowboys and Skins are crippled enough they don’t need any extra help. But agreeing to not abuse the uncapped year then going out and trying to snake the other owners is typical JJ and Snyder tactics and they deserve the punishment. It’s called karma. That’s y their teams sucked and will continue to suck.

  71. Always On Slightly Off says: Mar 14, 2012 9:36 AM

    Hey Mr. Commish, league people and owners, karma is a bitch and she is coming for you. Money and power mean nothing to karma.

  72. therealsmiley says: Mar 14, 2012 9:38 AM

    eaglesw00t – thank you! Finally a fellow NFL East fan saying what should be said. Wish the Giants had the same class. Hail!

  73. opinionated says: Mar 14, 2012 9:49 AM

    east96st, nice explanation. you know, i didn’t really agree with them losing salary cap space either. it didn’t help them at all. they still finished last in the division. so they shot their wad on haynesworth. wasn’t that punishment enough? taking cap space is just adding insult to injury! it is hard to sympathize though when the giants are being blamed by crazy washington fans. they were warned 6 times not to do it, but they were too arrogant to listen. i don’t even see where the giants fit into the story at all.

  74. dcbronco says: Mar 14, 2012 9:50 AM

    beelicker, what they did does help them in future years. It was a smart move. I would have done it with every player. But to prove it gives them a competitive advantage you have to prove money is the deciding factor in success. The Patriots won a SB with one of the lowest cap numbers. The Yankees don’t win every year. Also, many teams don’t spend close to the cap number. Would they be admitting that they have no intention of trying to win?

    Another thing is that teams re-do deals all of the time where signing bonuses are re-worked as salary or reverse. Does that mean those teams have cheated? If they didn’t, and it is an uncapped year, how could the ‘Skins and Cowboys be considered cheaters?

    Now if every other team stayed under the cap of the previous year the league has opened itself to collusion charges. If they then bought off the union by raising the cap this year, they have another problem. The Supreme Court has already said they can collude for things like schedules and salary cap, but it also said they are a cabal. Not one entity. They set the rules in their CBA agreement with the players. Colluding outside of that CBA is an Anti-Trust violation.

    These fines say that the teams colluded and never negotiated the last CBA in good faith. Because they never had any intention of actually having an uncapped year. And since the players are documented to have argued that in court, their accepting the bride doesn’t help the league.

  75. dstockydale says: Mar 14, 2012 9:57 AM

    This all seems a bit fishy to me:
    1) No rules were broken
    2) All contracts are approved by the Commissioners office
    3) The “agreement” implies collusion
    4) A number of other teams performed similar actions to manipulate future cap room:
    Bears – Julius Peppers (2010 cap hit: 35mil, 2011 cap hit: 13mil)
    Texans – Matt Schaub (2010 cap hit: 15mil, 2011 cap hit: 6mil)
    Chiefs – Tyson Jackson (2010 cap hit: 17mil, 2011 cap hit: 2mil)
    Eagles – Jason Peters (2010 cap hit: 14mil, 2011 cap hit: 6mil)

    the list goes on…

    All of the contracts show significant “spikes” in 2010 – be it due to miscellaneous bonusses or a restructuring of base salary.

    Granted, some teams (i.e. the Redskins) most likely took this practice further than others, but all of the teams are guilty of this to varying degrees. So the question remains “where do you draw the line of acceptibility”?

    One answer would be to dock the exact savings from each individual team for 2012/2013. However, this would significantly decrease the available monies for free agents – something the NFLPA would never go for. It looks like the easy option – to placate both the NFL owners and the NFLPA – was to make examples of the (seemingly) two worst offenders and distribute the lost cap between the other teams.

    Looking at this from my limited viewpoint, I suspect – and hope – this ruling can be overturned.

  76. tlaw21 says: Mar 14, 2012 10:27 AM

    One other thing I wanna add to all of your posts…..The league approved EVERY SINGLE ONE of these deals from the skins, cowboys, raiders, and whoever so why would they say now that what the skins and boys did was wrong when they already approved it a long time ago. Now that’s what I don’t understand and it reeks like bloated tuna!!!!!

  77. truthserum4u says: Mar 14, 2012 11:26 AM

    @ realitypolice –

    What you don’t seem to understand is the definition of collusion. (perhaps reading FinFan68′s post @ 9:09 AM will help you). The difference between telling teams to not spend and not dump salaries is the key here reality.

    How exactly is it illegal for the owners to decide to abide by the spirit of the expired CBA in reference to the uncapped year? This directive didn’t restrict the amount of money handed out to the players during that time, just when it was accounted for. So who were they colluding against? The lost cap space by the Cowboys & Redskins was subsequently redistributed among the remaining 28 teams to insure it wasn’t just lost.

    The owners make many decisions as to how they’ll operate as a group that aren’t governed by what is LEGAL (i.e. whether one can chose their own sponsors). According to Polian, this was one of them.

  78. truthserum4u says: Mar 14, 2012 11:36 AM

    Many of the salary numbers being spouted off here for players on other teams is just flat out incorrect!

  79. crisco2001 says: Mar 14, 2012 2:02 PM

    To truthserum,

    Actually, when it comes to paying players, they are governed by law. When one group of a given industry controls all of the wages of another group, they do have to follow the law. Choosing sponsors is an entirely different situation, to use your example. The catch is that the players are the only ones that can bring a suit against the league. They did have a suit against the league for collusion, but had to drop it as a condition of the new CBA. They wont do anything now because the league threatened a lower cap level, which would have dropped the level for the first time in history.

  80. rebel2650 says: Mar 14, 2012 6:25 PM

    I don’t care why they say they did it, it was wrong from the start! The cheap bast#*ds that didn’t spend during the uncapped, are the real culprits! And they have the nerve to place the blame on two teams who truly want to win! You know, I hate Dallas (Yeah, I’m a Redskins fan), but this is one time I think Danny and Jerry should sue the hell out of the NFL! I bet they would win too! That would bring that self-serving idiot, GODell down a few notches!
    And the under-handed way they did this, waiting until the eve of FA to level these fines is just as much a violation of the rules governing the NFL as “Pay for Punishment” could ever be!
    The NFL is starting to stink to high heaven!

  81. macwomack says: Mar 14, 2012 6:41 PM

    When the Vikings used the poison pill to get Guard Steve Hutchinson they “affected competitive balance.”

    Afterall there is an understanding not to use a poision pill – therefore the Vikings should be punished retroactively?

    Since Goodell is unaware we are raising this issue to his attention so that punishment can be delivered uniformly and consistently. And he can prove that this punishment to the leagues top two earners was not biased or influenced by other owners.

  82. truthserum4u says: Mar 14, 2012 7:33 PM

    @ crisco2001

    But collusion law prevents collective price setting; restriction of spending; restriction of fair market value; division of the market. None of these were affected by the agreement to prevent salary dumping. Teams could spend the money (other teams were over the previous cap as well but weren’t punished because of the way the contracts were structured) it was simply as to when that money would be accounted. The players didn’t suffer damages from the owners decision to uphold the spirit of the expiring CBA’s provision for the uncapped year. They were still going to get their money and they did.

    For example, Miles Austin got $17 mil in the first year of his deal; all as a base salary. But if the deal was, say $7 mil first year base salary, and a signing bonus of $10 mil (divided across the life of the contract as it would pertain to the eventual cap) he still would receive the same $17 mil in that first year. The money to the players remained unaffected.

    According to Bill Polian, the owners and the union had agreed the provisions of the uncapped year was not intended to allow salary cap dumping. He also said teams where warned if they did it the contracts may go thru but consequences may follow once a new CBA (along with a salary cap) was in place. At the time of these warnings the league had no idea the salary cap for 2012 was going to go down so they did it without the prior knowledge of this supposed bargaining chip.

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