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NFL says Haslam hasn’t violated personal-conduct policy


Pilot Flying J, the company run by Browns owner Jimmy Haslam, has agreed to pay a $92 million penalty as part of a federal investigation of fraud against the company’s customers. But Haslam himself won’t be penalized by the NFL.

The league says it sees no indication in the investigation into Haslam’s company that Haslam personally did anything that constitutes a violation of the NFL’s personal-conduct policy.

“There have been no allegations of any personal conduct that is in violation of NFL policy,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told PFT.

Although player arrests get most of the attention where the personal-conduct policy is concerned, everyone who works in the NFL is subject to the policy, including coaches, team executives, league officials and owners. Colts owner Jim Irsay is expected to face league discipline in connection with his March arrest for impaired driving. But in the case of Haslam, he’s apparently in the clear, as far as the league office is concerned.

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73 Responses to “NFL says Haslam hasn’t violated personal-conduct policy”
  1. ariani1985 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:02 PM

    But in green bay “fake stock hoders” get DUIs every day and they dont loose their toilet paper hanging on the wall! Leave jim alone!

  2. hakunamangata says: Jul 14, 2014 7:04 PM

    So in the NFL’s eyes fraud is ok as long as he’s not smoking pot?

    Makes sense. Wouldn’t want to set a bad example would we?

  3. keylimelight says: Jul 14, 2014 7:06 PM

    The only personal conduct required for owners is ownership. No surprise that the league found no fault.

  4. 1rockyracoon says: Jul 14, 2014 7:10 PM

    Nothing new. Crooked rich men can usually buy their way out of trouble. They may want to do better background checks on potential owners. No way he would have been approved to buy the Browns if the league new of the fraudulant practices committed by his company.

  5. bradytoanybody says: Jul 14, 2014 7:11 PM

    Of course not… It’s a lot different when you get caught with your hand in the cookie jar and the commish is your buddy..

  6. mrfrostyj says: Jul 14, 2014 7:12 PM

    According to the reports he’s in the clear altogether not just with the NFL (not enough evidence against him). Unlike another NFL owner he wasn’t caught by police at 2am with the rebate money.

  7. stl333 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:12 PM

    So smoking dope deserves 4 games, but defrauding people out of $150+ million dollars is okay…. Seems legit.

  8. thegreatgabbert says: Jul 14, 2014 7:15 PM

    Flying J floats above the cloud of suspicion.

  9. FinFan68 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:16 PM

    weren’t the fraud allegations citing refund issues from before the team was purchased anyway?

  10. publicteamforever says: Jul 14, 2014 7:16 PM

    The original affidavit accompanying the indictment certainly indicated that the top brass of the company knew that their policy was to screw the little guy trucking company that wasn’t paying close enough attention to the bills and prices. Haslam attended meeting where the bad policy was discussed (as alleged by the sales managers). The chief executive is always responsible for the bad conduct and corporate culture of their business organization. Apparently, the NFL owners club care care of their own, to the point of turning a blind eye and protecting themselves . Hypocrites, all of em.

  11. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jul 14, 2014 7:16 PM

    Lol. Really ripping off your customers isn’t a violation of the personal conduct policy but smoking marijuana is? Lol. What a joke. OK NFL. Just come out an admit the personal conduct policy doesn’t apply to league officials or owners.

    You will get what’s coming to all of you NFL owners and Goodell. It’s sooner than u think

  12. radioactivechimp says: Jul 14, 2014 7:16 PM

    Thank God he only stole 150 million dollars and didn’t do something terrible like smoke weed…

  13. lennydpocketqb says: Jul 14, 2014 7:19 PM

    It’s a different company and one that has little to do with the Browns. I see no issue with the NFL’s decision

  14. ytownjoe says: Jul 14, 2014 7:20 PM

    Wow. Millions stolen from hard working American truckers and we’re to believe the man in charge of the company knew nothing?

    There are laws for average citizens and there are laws for billionaires.

  15. jayovalentine says: Jul 14, 2014 7:20 PM

    Mr. Irsay demands an explanation.

  16. publicteamforever says: Jul 14, 2014 7:21 PM

    \End the career of a player for smoking weed, because it is conduct that “violates NFL personal-conduct policy”. Wilf and Haslam can pay huge fines and civil penalties for million$ in fraud upon their customers and partners, yet that does not “violate NFL personal-conduct policy”. What kind of policy is this?

  17. greenbaydean says: Jul 14, 2014 7:22 PM

    The NFL does hold owners to higher standards. They forced Eddie Debartolo Jr to sell the 49ers over illegal casino dealings. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think the NFL has ever permanently banned a player…

  18. footballguy5 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:23 PM

    Go fins

  19. bucsorbust says: Jul 14, 2014 7:24 PM

    And there you have it. Fraud committed by NFL team owners getting stung in federal investigations for $92 million. But no problem says the NFL. No wonder the player knock women out, take drugs, cheat, drive drunk, and punch out bystanders. Who’s going to say jack at the end of the day?

  20. 6ball says: Jul 14, 2014 7:26 PM

    At bare minimum the Patriots should be stripped of a first round pick.

  21. joejacks says: Jul 14, 2014 7:27 PM

    Still no suspensions on Rice or Irsay?!?


  22. bucsorbust says: Jul 14, 2014 7:28 PM

    How would Flying J defraud customers? My hunch is they were claiming chicken hot dogs were beef. That’s just wrong man. I knew something wasn’t right.

  23. jredshoes says: Jul 14, 2014 7:30 PM

    Seems like a good deal to me. Ill scam you out of $150 million but you’ll fine me $90 mil? So I end up $60 million ahead. That’s the kind of stuff that makes America great!!!!

  24. bucsorbust says: Jul 14, 2014 7:31 PM

    Now we know why Haslam didn’t call Johnny M. until #22 overall…too much freaken money in his hand.

  25. thestrategyexpert says: Jul 14, 2014 7:32 PM

    Aiello apparently doesn’t read PFT where there have been countable allegations made.

    But in no seriousness the NFL was smart to require allegations to only be recognized if officially turned in to the proper office that handles that, which is headquartered on Mars: Our rover-bot is scanning the surface every day looking for allegation paperwork, still nothing, just dirt and alien suggestion letters for how to improve the replay system.

  26. iceburgskin202 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:35 PM

    So if a player starts a company defrauds people out of millions nothing will happen? Yeah right!!!

  27. fordwuzanazi says: Jul 14, 2014 7:37 PM

    “What? Didn’t you guys know we’re all crooks by now. It is 2014.” -The owners

  28. turkjones says: Jul 14, 2014 7:39 PM

    But corporations are people, right?

  29. patsfan says: Jul 14, 2014 7:40 PM

    Goodell, “How do you plead, Mr, Haslam, Sir?”

    Haslam: “Billiionaire”

    Irsay, “Ditto.”


  30. clbrwns says: Jul 14, 2014 7:41 PM

    This goes under the don’t do anything to chase off a Billionaire rule. Those guys are hard to replace.

  31. excessivedrinking says: Jul 14, 2014 7:41 PM

    5 and 11, at best.

  32. Getoffmylawn! says: Jul 14, 2014 7:41 PM

    You can run and fund an illegal gambling ring as a player and not get banned for life.

  33. bradytoanybody says: Jul 14, 2014 7:42 PM

    Actually Debartolo was never forced to sell his team. He was only suspended for one year from team operations by the league. Giving up controlling interest of the team to his sister came from a different legal matter. I believe he also later sold his hockey team (or maybe it was a percentage of a hockey team) to help the family down the line too

  34. spharrgcs says: Jul 14, 2014 7:42 PM

    No intelligent and accomplished CEO of a company that large is completely oblivious to the inner workings of those bending the rules to make the company more money. Haslem knew, money and connections talk. Moving on.

  35. clownsfan says: Jul 14, 2014 7:47 PM

    Things just keep comin’ up Cleveland!!!

    All jokes aside. Did anybody expect him to be penalized by the NFL?


  36. Marshawn Lunch says: Jul 14, 2014 7:53 PM

    Rich guy court.

  37. crabbies2013 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:57 PM

    Looks like the haters don’t like the decision, but it seems excessive to me. Guess a $92 miilion penalty is only a slap on the wrist.

  38. ravenswhat says: Jul 14, 2014 7:59 PM

    I think the problem with these cases is that the average guy on the street is totally unaware or unable to process what guys like Haslem are doing. I mean, they are doing real harm to people. But when the avg guy hears a player is smoking dope.. oh my god stop the press!! Get that guy out of the league!! It’s truly unreal the way people think.

  39. mzim2756 says: Jul 14, 2014 7:59 PM

    NFL trying to save face, if the potential issue was disclosed before the purchase I way he’d be approved as owner

  40. qdog112 says: Jul 14, 2014 8:01 PM

    “NFL says Haslam hasn’t violated personal-conduct policy”
    File this under SHOCK and AWE!!!

  41. ballboy48 says: Jul 14, 2014 8:12 PM

    Because it wasn’t him. It was the Senior Executives that were skimming.

  42. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jul 14, 2014 8:14 PM

    To a 30.43 billion dollar company a 150 million dollar fine is 0.49%. i wouldnt even call thaT a slap on the wrist

  43. thetooloftools says: Jul 14, 2014 8:15 PM

    Because stealing and lying about it is the norm for pro franchise owners.

  44. bucsorbust says: Jul 14, 2014 8:17 PM

    Jimmy H.: Hello? Johnny, you’re my kind of guy. We want to draft you.
    JFF: Hello? Jimmy? Is that you? You are taking me at #8 overall right?
    Jimmy H: Johnny, I like your style. You’re my kind of player. We want to pick you right now.
    JFF: Are you going to take me now or not?
    Jimmy H: Johnny, are you there? Hello? Johnny. I can’t hear him. I’ve got too much money in my hand. Let’s go get Justin Gilbert.
    JFF: Hello? Hello!
    JFF: (45 minutes later) Hello?
    JFF: (55 minutes later) Hello?
    Jimmy H: Okay, I still can’t hear him. I’ve still got too much money in my hand. But get him at #22 overall anyway. He’s my kind of guy.
    Jimmy H: Johnny, we picked you. Now, straighten up. You’re the face of my football team. My kind of guy!
    JFF: Huh? I can’t hear you! I’ve got too much money in my hand!

  45. mrfrostyj says: Jul 14, 2014 8:19 PM

    Pilot Flying J already paid back everyone effected with interest and is being fined 92 million on top of that yet people still complain like its a slap on the wrist.

    One of you get a speeding ticket for $200 and you’re crying bloody murder.

    And you’re talking about a double standard in the NFL.

  46. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jul 14, 2014 8:22 PM

    Im firmly convinced the NFL has paid trolls on here to support their side of the argument on every issue. Real people with a brain cannot be seriously that stupid.

  47. excessivedrinking says: Jul 14, 2014 8:27 PM

    Try again, ball boy. Lay off the kool aid.

  48. anusfur says: Jul 14, 2014 8:44 PM

    Everyone knows Jimmy Haslam is guilty and knew what was going on, including his old man. But the Haslam’s have a long history of buying themselves out of trouble. Too bad for the minions who carried out the orders.

    But you can’t buy back your reputation. They will be forever sullied by this.

  49. cags777 says: Jul 14, 2014 8:45 PM

    If the NFL doesn’t believe Haslam did anything wrong, then why fight to keep people like Rush Limbaugh and Donald Trump out of leadership circles? I also wouldn’t be surprised if the NFL fines Jim Irsay $50,000. So much for integrity.

  50. gargamelsmentor says: Jul 14, 2014 8:46 PM

    That picture of him says it all. Karma….go find the Haslem brothers NOW!!!

  51. mrlaloosh says: Jul 14, 2014 9:01 PM

    Whaaaattttt? I call shenanigans!

  52. wisconsinhillfolk says: Jul 14, 2014 9:24 PM

    Because stealing isn’t wrong.

  53. smackingfools says: Jul 14, 2014 9:30 PM

    Good thing for his brother, the government doesn’t have any personal conduct code.

  54. berone2012 says: Jul 14, 2014 10:03 PM

    Announcing the new owner of the Buffalo Bills: …Bernie Madoff!!

  55. ytownjoe says: Jul 14, 2014 10:14 PM

    How can they now justify keeping Trump out of this billionaires club?

    The Donald will take the NFL to a new level.

  56. celticsforever says: Jul 14, 2014 10:19 PM

    Wow. Just wow.

  57. jimthebuilder27 says: Jul 14, 2014 10:29 PM

    The NFL still hasn’t punished Jim Irsay for his DUI, nor will they punish Zygi Wilf for defrauding people.

    The NFL is so hypocritical!

  58. mogogo1 says: Jul 14, 2014 10:31 PM

    Of course he hasn’t violated any policies. And according to David Stern, Sterling never did anything wrong either. Years from now it’ll be Goodell’s successor who ends up cleaning some of these sorts of things up while Goodell is remembered as the do-nothing who was afraid to take a stand.

  59. 6250claimer says: Jul 14, 2014 11:54 PM

    Is it just me, or does he not bear a stunning resemblance to Ed Hochuli in that picture? Make him take his shirt off, I think that’s Ed without the Grecian Formula.

  60. dj3ball says: Jul 15, 2014 1:08 AM

    If you believe Haslam would potentially destroy his own company for less than $100 million, you’re ignorant, narrow minded and lack any business acumen whatsoever. I’m not saying there isn’t a double standard. I’m saying, a calculated individual like Haslam knows the long term value of his company’s reputation and wouldn’t stake that for short term gains.

  61. campcouch says: Jul 15, 2014 2:12 AM

    His private company is different from his NFL endeavors. One has nothing to do with the other except the owner paying bills. If he defrauded football fans,then that would be another issue. Much the same with Donald Sterling. The NBA is divesting him of his franchise but they can’t touch his other business. That’s for the Feds to deal with. Player drug punishment is part of an agreement that the PA and NFL agreed upon. The PA should’ve stricken the testing of anything not associated with performance enhancement in the CBA, but they didn’t so they have to live with it. No owner or Goodell is going to tie the business that gave him the money to purchase a franchise to the franchise. Then player lawsuits will affect the source of income that floats teams. No one really believes that the teams actually make enough money to operate,pay players,staff and the like and turn a fat profit. That’s why the owners try working the players over, to make more money so they don’t have to use their external income to pay for the team.

  62. johnnyb1976 says: Jul 15, 2014 6:08 AM

    You’d think that as much money as this guy has screwed people out of he would have enough money to make Cleveland a winner. #factoryofsadness

  63. bigswifty74 says: Jul 15, 2014 6:18 AM

    Too bad Josh Gordon doesn’t own this team. He’d be playing the whole year.

  64. revelation123 says: Jul 15, 2014 6:30 AM

    Fraud against citizens isn’t against the personal conduct policy because the NFL defrauds people all the time.

    The “not-for-profit” NFL not only makes everyone pay their taxes for them, they also make the people pay for their stadiums.

    So it’s no surprise really.

  65. ridingwithnohandlebars says: Jul 15, 2014 6:56 AM

    The NFL sees nothing wrong with ripping off customers…I believe it.

  66. floreskins says: Jul 15, 2014 7:21 AM

    I guess stealing by means of accounting is held in higher regard than stealing with a gun.

  67. shutupbrees says: Jul 15, 2014 7:23 AM

    Gooddell overseeing punishment of the owners is a massive conflict of interest considering he works for the 32 owners as the Commissioner and received like $30M from them in salary.

    I’m getting so tired of Gooddell. He’s waiting for a natural disaster or some other major news event to slide in his ridiculously light suspension on Jim Irsay, let alone Ray Rice.

    I’m with Mark Cuban, the NFLs time will come where there is backlash for its arrogance and decisions.

  68. harrisonhits2 says: Jul 15, 2014 7:25 AM

    So an owner steals millions and millions of dollars from his corporate customers and that doesn’t violate the “personal conduct policy” ?

    Screw the NFL this is sickening.

  69. politicallyincorrect says: Jul 15, 2014 7:59 AM

    as I see this.. I wonder

    why has Bob Kraft escaped more scrutiny? I guess the “I was duped” / I’m just an idiot and not accountable for my actions defense is one the NFL forgives

  70. steelerben says: Jul 15, 2014 8:51 AM

    Just a couple of points.

    For the argument that players are being suspended for smoking marijuana under the personal conduct policy: that is incorrect. They are being suspended for violating the substance abuse policy established by the CBA and approved by the NFLPA. Many of us don’t believe that the occasional (or even frequent) toke is that big a deal but it is still against federal law. The times might be changing, but the paperwork hasn’t.

    Second: Haslem isn’t being suspended under the personal conduct policy because the federal investigation into his fraud case “didn’t have enough evidence” to prosecute him. Meanwhile, across Lake Erie, a certain meatheaded quarterback was suspended six games (reduced to four) even though the cases raised against him were dismissed due to a lack of evidence. *There* is your double standard.

  71. eaglesfan290 says: Jul 15, 2014 8:58 AM

    Ok so if you rob a 7-11 of $30 with a gun and you get 30 years to life

    Now what you should have done was get a lawyer and incorporate, rob your customers blind, pay your taxes on time, pay a fine… once again to the federal government, and go drink your scotch on the back deck of a yacht you bought with stolen money!

    Seriously we don’t even hide the double standard anymore.

    Flying J stole hundreds of millions of dollars and that’s totally fine with the NFL.

    Just really sad who will ever follow laws and rules given the fact it just doesn’t pay!

  72. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jul 15, 2014 9:15 AM

    Personal Conduct Policy
    All persons associated with the NFL are required to avoid “conduct detrimental to the integrity of and public confidence in the National Football League.” This requirement applies to players, coaches, other team employees, owners, game officials and all others privileged to work in the National Football League.
    For many years, it has been well understood that rules promoting lawful, ethical, and responsible conduct serve the interests of the League, its players, and fans. Illegal or irresponsible conduct does more than simply tarnish the offender. It puts innocent people at risk, sullies the reputation of others involved in the game, and undermines public respect and support for the NFL.
    Standard of Conduct:
    While criminal activity is clearly outside the scope of permissible conduct, and persons who engage in criminal activity will be subject to discipline, the standard of conduct for persons employed in the NFL is considerably higher. It is not enough simply to avoid being found guilty of a crime. Instead, as an employee of the NFL or a member club, you are held to a higher standard and expected to conduct yourself in a way that is responsible, promotes the values upon which the League is based, and is lawful.
    Persons who fail to live up to this standard of conduct are guilty of conduct detrimental and subject to discipline, even where the conduct itself does not result in conviction of a crime. Discipline may be imposed in any of the following circumstances:
    • Criminal offenses including, but not limited to, those involving: the use or threat of violence; domestic violence and other forms of partner abuse; theft and other property crimes; sex offenses; obstruction or resisting arrest; disorderly conduct; fraud; racketeering; and money laundering;
    • Criminal offenses relating to steroids and prohibited substances, or substances of abuse;
    • Violent or threatening behavior among employees, whether in or outside the workplace;
    • Possession of a gun or other weapon in any workplace setting, including but not limited to stadiums, team facilities, training camp, locker rooms, team planes, buses, parking lots, etc., or unlawful possession of a weapon outside of the workplace;
    • Conduct that imposes inherent danger to the safety and well being of another person; and
    • Conduct that undermines or puts at risk the integrity and reputation of the NFL, NFL clubs, or NFL players.

    How is this not conduct detrimental to the league and its alleged integrity?

  73. steelcityfinest13 says: Jul 15, 2014 10:42 AM

    Message to players: smoke less….lie…steal and dont drink and drive!!

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