League requires Cowboys, Redskins to take half their cap reductions in 2012


When reports of the uncapped year cap slap of the Cowboys and Redskins emerged on Monday, it was explained that the teams could decide on their own how to divide the cap consequences in 2012 and 2013.  That prompted some speculation that the teams would spend now, and fight later.

A league source tells PFT that the teams will be required to absorb at least half of the cap consequences in 2012.  For the Cowboys, it means $5 million in lost cap room.  For the Redskins, $18 million disappears.

They can each choose to absorb more of the cap penalty in 2012, or they can push all of the other half to 2013.

In contrast, the teams that received the $1.643 million cap credit (which comes from the Cowboys/Redskins’ lost cap space) can use split it up however they choose over the next two seasons.  Every franchise except the Raiders and Saints receives the extra credit.

151 responses to “League requires Cowboys, Redskins to take half their cap reductions in 2012

  1. Dan Snyder is a MONEY MAKER. He will make money off this. Stand by….You heard it hear first. NFL will lose this one and pay.

  2. Here’s hoping Goodell is found guilty of violating the Sherman Anti-Trust Act and sees time behind bars…

    “Every person who shall monopolize, or attempt to monopolize, or combine or conspire with any other person or persons, to monopolize any part of the trade or commerce among the several States, or with foreign nations, shall be deemed guilty of a felony”

  3. When is the league going to actually inform the teams of this, or are they afraid to put anything in writing since this is whole situation is BS.

  4. still don’t see how this is legal, fine a team for something that was not against the rules and that you approved at the time.

  5. Seems to me the league is setting itself up for a huge lawsuit. Basically admitting to collusion.

  6. So, when they win the appeal/lawsuit, does that mean they get an extra $18M/$5M next year and the teams that spent the $1.6M this year have to give that up next year?

  7. Until the League issues a statement, other than these “sources”… I will believe.

  8. I am really surprised Goodell has the balls to slap Jerry Jones and Dan Snyder that hard.

  9. So the Management Council Executive Committee is responsible for the decision to hand out these penalties. The chairman of that committee – the Giants John Mara.

  10. I can’t help but laugh at all those skins fan saying “oh we have all this cap room. We don’t need draft picks.” Not so much “hail” but “fail”. Bwwwhahaha

  11. So there is no appeal? The REDSKINS SD they would dispute the matter but penalizing the team before any appeals seams a little AGAINST THE LAW, I guess this is a good time to mention that NO WRITTEN LAW OR RULES HAVE BEEN BROKEN, AND EVERY MOVE MADE WAS ACCEPTED BY THE NFL, now 2 years later without notice ???? This is some bull, I miss Pete Rozelle.! NO FUN LEAGUE is becoming NO FUN

  12. Whoa, Nellie! Nothing like a good, old-fashioned anti-trust fight to upset Goodell’s hard won decade of labor peace.

    As a Redskins fan, my bias in favor of the Redskins is obvious, but does not change the situation. Realitypolice has set forth the facts very clearly. Anyone in need of a refresher course in antitrust issues as they pertain to matters between the owners (as opposed to matters between owners and labor) need only review the Ninth Circuit’s decision upholding the Raiders judgment against the league regarding franchise movement from the early ’80s.

    This overreach by Goodell, clearly backed by small-market franchises, including the sacrosanct families such as the Rooneys and Maras, is designed to offset the consequences of the owners’ actions in the labor negotiations of the current CBA. (It surely can be no coincidence that a Mara chairs the relevant committee addressing this issue.) The owners decided to force an early termination of the CBA with the resultant “uncapped” year in their determination to obtain better terms from the players in the next CBA. This tactic proved a smashing success.

    Unfortunately for the small-market franchises, an “uncapped” year presented an opportunity to franchises such as the Redskins and Cowboys to address untenable and damaging cap positions. In an effort to subvert the labor negotiations and tilt the process further in their advantage, many owners apparently devised a system of collusion that could be denied publicly and leave no papertrail. By giving multiple “warnings” to some owners that the illegal, unofficial policy of collusion would be enforced after the players had been pressured into accepting the owners’ demands, the owners acted in the classic fashion of a cartel as understood under antitrust law.

    The small market franchises have benefitted for years under the socialist tenets of the league’s structure to ensure their ability to compete against wealthier franchises. In fact, these franchises have been so successful in using superior football-related organizations that they have enjoyed tremendous on-field success while the Redskins and Cowboys have endured many years of failure.

    Owners such as Snyder and Jones have cooperated with this regime, while chafing at some of its revenue-sharing aspects, in the apparent belief that the NFL’s ultimate success depends upon this unique, socialist structure to avoid the fate of MLB. By poking this hornet’s nest, the owners and Goodell risk this arrangement.

    If the league insists upon this punitive enforcement of an illegal collusion to dampen player salaries in the uncapped year, then Snyder and Jones should follow Al Davis’ example and bring an anti-trust suit against the league.

    With the facts in their favor, they could very easily force the league’s capitulation in the face of the destruction of the “house of cards” which is the NFL under anti-trust law.

    Snyder and Jones should make clear that their forebearance in underwriting the success of the Maras, Rooneys and “stockholders” of Green Bay (and the Super Bowl championships those teams have enjoyed since the mid-90s) is at an end.

    If the benefactors of the socialist structure want to assert that they have the right to enforce collusion in the uncapped year, they should be put on notice that Snyder and Jones are willing, and perhaps even anxious, to reverse years of futility by two of the league’s proudest franchises by ushering in a new era of professional football – an era characterized by the survival of the fittest as the Redskins and Cowboys become the NFL’s Red Sox and Yankees. Many Redskins and Cowboys fans could comfort themselves about the dissolution of the “old” NFL by warming themselves in the glow of Red Sox- and Yankee-like rings and trophies.

    Hopefully, those who have benefitted so greatly by the socialist structure of the NFL and its one great foray into capitalist hardball (forcing the uncapped year and early termination of the CBA) will recognize the fool-hardiness of seeking to further their advantage by punishing their benefactors for exercising their rights in the uncapped year. Hail!

  13. if goodell really wanted to nail them he’d make them take the whole hit this year. it doesnt really matter…..both teams are run like garbage anyway.

  14. Cowboys and Redskins Unite!! (First time ever??) Tell the league (goodell) to go eff himself and get his lawyers ready.

  15. That’s BS. It’s a horrible ruling from the start!! It was an uncapped year and warning teams not to take advantage of it is BS! So there were no other teams in the league that took advantage of the uncapped year? Not with one single player? C’mon! I hope Snyder fights it tooth and nail. Hail!!

  16. Wow the nfl is doing what they can to screw these organizations and not allowing them any chance to appeal a bs punishment for not breaking any rules.

  17. digitaldonnie says:Mar 13, 2012 11:19 AM

    I can’t help but laugh at all those skins fan saying “oh we have all this cap room. We don’t need draft picks.” Not so much “hail” but “fail”. Bwwwhahaha


    You do realize that even with the penalty, the Redskins are in the top half of the league, re: available cap room?

    your post = fail

  18. Goodell has lost his mind. Bruce Allen and the Redskins org will fight this tooth and nail. I guess written contracts don’t mean anything these days, uncapped doesn’t mean uncapped, approval from a front office isn’t really approval, and collusion doesn’t land the commish is prison – that illegal activity only applies to non-sports organizations.

    This is some 1930’s mafia style strong arm. De Smith, I lost A LOT of respect for you after this as well.

  19. Wow, the NFL is becoming like NASCAR…just making up rules as they go along.

    I hope the Skins/Cowboys get in front of a judge today and can somehow stop free agency from kicking off on time until they can get this sorted out. I’m not sure how you break a rule that isn’t a rule. A wink and a handshake amongst owners isn’t a rule…it is collusion.

  20. I would blame Bruce Allen, but most of this is due to the massive Haynesworth bungle.

    Good grief. Just when I thought it was ALREADY hard to root for my team. Cripes.

  21. Hey Redskins, you could probably pick up T.O. on the cheap. Serves you right. There will be no lawsuit, all these minilawyers chiming in “just wait” haha.

  22. slickzmoney says:Mar 13, 2012 11:19 AM

    So the Management Council Executive Committee is responsible for the decision to hand out these penalties. The chairman of that committee – the Giants John Mara.

    the name inscribed on every NFL football in play, The Duke….the “duke” in question being wellington mara. the mara’s helped make this league what it is….deal with it.

  23. they can’t sue, so dal and was are gettig scrwed, thats what you get for taking shortcuts

  24. This was the opportunity the other 30 owners had of taking a shot at Jones and Snyder. And they took it. How interesting that news broke 24-hours before free agency. I mean, did the NFL/NFLPA not expect a lawsuit?

  25. This isn’t going to stick. The Redskins and Cowboys complied with the 2010 -11 collective bargaining agreement, and it was approved by the NFL commissioner’s office. This will get tied up in legal process for a long time to come.

  26. Let me be clear. I HATE the Cowboys and have no feelings toward the Redskins.

    With that said, this has to be the most unfair penalty I’ve ever seen in pro sports. All of these actions were APPROVED by the NFL in 2010. If they were breaking “rules” – unwritten as they apparently were – then the moves should have never been allowed.

    If Goodell is meting out penalties for wrongdoing this severe, then he should be fired for allowing it two years ago!

    The NFL is going to get a massive black eye from this, way worse than SpyGate or BountyGate.

  27. I’m still waiting to see how the league explains this *in writing*. I imagine the lawyers in DC and Dallas are salivating at the chance to demolish the league’s argument…

    How did they arrive at the $10 million and $36 million figure? What written, signed agreement are the four teams in violation of?

  28. If this sticks the Redskins are going to be hurting after giving up way to much for RG3. Good news is they wont need high picks for trade bait to move up next year to get Matt Barkley since they will already be picking in the first couple picks.

  29. Don’t know how Jones & Snyder can spend now and sue later. NFL will just refuse to approve their FA contracts. I think they’re screwed.

  30. Even with the penalty, the Redskins still have over 22 million to spend, more than half the teams in the NFL. This won’t stop them for spending lots of money in free agency.

  31. Snyder and Jones have got to fight this in court and the media. They need to call some of their friends in congress to sit down with Goodell and talk some sense into him

  32. I’m not sure this is being reported correctly. It doesn’t seem so much like an after the offense penalty as it does a course correction. These teams obviously tried to avoid being held to the salary cap structure by front loading contracts to the “uncapped” year. The league is saying that they told every team that this wouldn’t be allowed and now are simply taking back the salary cap space that these teams incorrectly “freed up” when they didn’t follow the league’s instruction.

  33. I created an account just to post on this. This is absurd. It’s illegal, it’s a travesty, it’s a sham, and it’s a mockery. Snyder and Jones are the two most powerful men in the NFL, they’re not going down without a fight. The comish is going down. See ya Roger.

  34. The owners not having to spend money and they can keep it in their pocket. Isn’t this a good thing? If I was an owner and wasn’t required to spend 36M on player salaries, I would ask where to sign up.

    I think the Bucs might do this every season.

  35. The timing here is incredably suspicious. Wai to 12 hours before free agency begins and announce this when they have known about this for how long? And how is this different than front loading Pepper’s contract with the Bears to the tune of 34-39 million in 2010?

  36. What if the Skins and Cowboys simply don’t follow through with the “punishment?” Are the police going to show up, how about representatives from the better business bureau? Would the league toss the Cowboys and the Redskins out of the NFL?

  37. By the way, the collusion violation some are screaming about would only apply if it is deemed that the league’s action conspired to limit the size of the contracts for the players, not if the only question is when the said contract is being paid.

  38. This makes no since at all.. Come on Snyder and Jones, shove this one back up the leagues ass! Its not in writing yet because the league knows they are gona be screwed. As a skins fan I hate Snyder but definitely sticking up for him here. Redskins and cowboys are two of the biggest money makers in the NFL. If pos goodell that keeps ruining everything thinks he will get away with this from these guys he is wrong! The NFL is screwing them selves big time.

  39. I’d like to see all of the teams that were under paying their players (the non cap/cap Salary floor) get similar penalties as well.

    Also..has anyone pointed out that Julius Peppers got a front loaded contract of 35 Million in 2010? Oh wait, John Mara doesn’t care about the Bears.

    This whole thing reeks.

  40. why would anyone push it to next year, when they can allocate it this year and then carry over this year’s to next year?

  41. As a Giants fan, I welcome anything that slows down the Cowboys or Redskins but I still don’t understand how this isn’t collusion. I’d think the NFLPA would have a field day with this news but I’ve read thay they have signed off on it. There must be some legal mumbo-jumbo that favors the NFL in this regard, but it just doesn’t pass the laymans’ smell test.

  42. Where are the Bears in this?

    Miles Austin was given $17M base salary in 2010, dropping to under $700k base salary in 2011.

    Julius Peppers was given $20M base salary in 2010, dropping to $900k base salary in 2011.

    Which is bigger offense for “violating” the 30% “rule”.

  43. I’m 100% in favor of this. My only complaint is that the cowboys got so much less of a penalty when they spent close to the same amount.

    I say they should suffer at least 15 mill per year as well.

    And it wasn’t collusion. It was competitive balance between the teams.

    Skins should take 80% of the hit this year so they have moving room next year. If they fight it now, they might have to táke the total hit next year.

    Personally, I think stripping two first founders this year wouldhave been better punishment.

  44. HEY WWMSGRR: Shouldn’t the Redskins & Cowboys be punished for “monopolizing” the uncapped year & dumping contracts? And they would have gotten away with it…if it wasn’t for that pesky Roger Goodell. They got caught. Serves em right.

  45. I think that the 2 teams should go to court for an injunction to delay the start of free agency for the entire league until this has been ruled on by the courts. The competitive disadvantage the teams have been put under will not be able to be remedied by cash alone. I’m not a big fan of suing for every little thing, but in this case I feel it’s justified.

  46. Funny how this happened and all of a sudden the bounty gate talk stopped. Coincidence? I think not…

  47. I dislike both the Cowboys and Skins, and think this is obsurd… there no official rula against it, and every team restructures contracts to clear up some space.. how they came to the decision of punishing these two teams and the extent of the punishment is ridiculious… from what I understand they violated a “gentlemans agreement” and nothing official… Absolutely horrible grounds for punishment…

  48. The commissioner approved all of this and if you want to blame soneone, blame him…he approved it. And who the eff is Wellington Mara to be deciding on another team? This won’t stick. Go get em’ Snyder! Hail!

  49. johnster67 says:
    Mar 13, 2012 11:18 AM
    Ever more proof Jerky Jones is playing fantasy football.
    Wow, your post is proof of you not being in touch with the rest of the world. This is a topic where pretty much everyone has agreed that this is foolish. Everyone but you. Maybe you dont understand that what they did wasnt wrong. In no sense of the rules is what they did considered wrong. God-dell pick two of the most powerful owners to try and make an example of. Wrong move!!!

  50. Explain to me why this seems to only be about the teams which either or the wealthiest or have or had issues with the NFL? I mean we know Al Davis’s history with suing said league, we know said trouble New Orleans is now in….

    No matter how you look at it this is as bogus as they come, how in the hell do you make up a rule 2 years after the fact to punish teams who by your own guidelines broke no rules and furthermore for contracts you and your office approved if there was a problem shouldn’t they have been rejected? Did you fine you and your office for this?

  51. I wonder if this will affect Jones & Snyder’s view on revenue sharing. Being singled out like chumps.

    Say bye bye to your teams Buffalo, Jacksonville, et al.

  52. Serious question:

    If the Redskins/Cowboys file suit, could this actually delay Free Agency for all teams this year?

    It seems to me that even if the Redskins and Cowboys appealed and won, then it would be too late to get the FAs they wanted — Jackson, Finnigan, etc.

    So could they argue that they will be irreprably harmed if this process is not resolved before FAs can be signed.

  53. wwmsgrr says: Mar 13, 2012 11:16 AM

    Here’s hoping Goodell is found guilty of violating the Sherman Anti-Trust Act and sees time behind bars…

    “Every person who shall monopolize, or attempt to monopolize, or combine or conspire with any other person or persons, to monopolize any part of the trade or commerce among the several States, or with foreign nations, shall be deemed guilty of a felony”


    I would be interested to see how that could happen, considering that the NFL has an anti-trust exception.

  54. By the way, I’m sick of people saying the skins gave up 3 first rounds….they switched places in this years draft and gave up 2 first roun
    ds later

  55. Seeing that Mara is involved in this and that both the Redskins and Dallas are also in the NFC east, this doesn’t scream Conflict of Interest?

    Also the fact this only came out after the Skins mad a trade to get a possible viable prospect of QB and threaten the G’nats ability to compete?

    I think the Skins are targeted more severely because they spanked the G’nats twice last year.

  56. Funny thing is I doubt that this will stop the Redskins from signing anyone they want. When has the salary cap stopped them? They have geniuses working on structuring those contracts and they have an owner who has no qualms paying a turd like Fat Albert $21 million to just go away. So get ready for 7-year contracts with very small salaries but HUGE bonuses; contacts with backloaded big salaries that’ll be converted (wink wink) into bonuses as soon as the heat is gone.

  57. Petedutcher, you obviously don’t understand collusion. When owners privately agree to not do something that allowable otherwise by rule, that is collusion against the players, pure and simple. Open and shut case.

    However, Jerry wants another Super Bowl, and he won’t take on the owners over a relatively small cap space issue. And Dallas has triggers in contracts to restructure deals, so they can create the needed cap room (and everyone can backload into the new TV deal years anyway).

    Snyder will alone on this one if he pursues the league in court.

  58. Since it’s an unwritten rule which would be illegal if it existed, they should simply act as if the ruling is illegal and non-existent.

    Not to mention, all the Holier-Than-Thou Giant fans, imagine if Snyder were on the Committee deciding punishment being meted out to the Giants, how you’d all be crowing. So don’t sit there and claim he is of unquestionable integrity simply because his last name is Mara.

  59. Since Dallas and Wash have operating cash, based on marketing, sales, large stadiums, local revenue, etc., they paid all the guaranteed money of contracts in 2010 instead of prorating it throughout the life of the contract.

    Frankly, this is good business based on the rules all the owners and NFLPA agreed to.

    You get the sense that the other owners, even the ones with deep pockets, either didn’t have large contracts or just didn’t want to pay large sums of money.

  60. If they’re punished for overspending, the same should be done for the teams that underspent the under capped year. Makes no sense, uncapped should mean uncapped.

  61. clw1906 says: Mar 13, 2012 11:18 AM
    Seems to me the league is setting itself up for a huge lawsuit. Basically admitting to collusion.

    Goodell’s middle name is collusion. Remember when he supposedly didn’t tell Vick to play for the Eagles?

  62. It was collectively bargained so all you crying cowgirl and deadskin losers can shut up.

  63. I cant see this holding up when protested…They never instituted this rule in writing and was really a backroom handshake. Saying that Goodell does what he wants. Also doesn’t the NFL approve every contract before its signed. Why let this happen in the first place if it was so illegal?

  64. why is it so hard for people on here to understand. Just because the league approved these deals does not mean they weren’t warned that there WOULD be penalties. You can not front load contracts in an uncapped year. What did the redskins and cowboys do? The NFLPA signed off on this and the redskins and cowboys are fighting against 28 other owners who get over 1.5 million extra money they can spend. Who do you think will win? This is no ones fault beside the cowboys and redskins. They did what they could to win now. They did not care about the consequences after this past year because they wanted a ring. Who can blame them? But don’t whine about having repercussions now.

  65. Skins will have $17 million after penalty. Still in top half of league with teams with regards to cap space. Plus will have 7 picks (includes #6 to #2 swap in 1st Rd) in the draft to address needs/depth. Lets get on with FA now. HTTR.

  66. There is no rule and there was no cap so calling the lawyers is a waste of time. The owners agreed on this and 2 of them decided to go against the agreement that THEY WERE INVOLVED in making. Cry about it all you want but Goodell is only enforcing an agreement made by the owners themselves. Hes not some rogue commish dropping the hammer on his own. The Redskins and Cowboys knew it was coming a while ago but they had to wait for the official cap number to see what the damage was going to be. This penalty is an accepted risk those 2 owners were willing to take to rid themselves of bad contracts in an unethical manner. Dont count on this being fought and/or overturned.

  67. The NFL approved all of the Redskins and the Dallas Cowboys moves. So this makes no sense and how do you penalize the team for spending over the cap On an uncapped year. Seems like they’re out to screw the skins and cowboys and I’m a fan of either one

  68. Where are the Bears in this? Great questions…

    Julius Peppers was given $20M base salary in 2010, dropping to $900k base salary in 2011.

  69. Cowboys 10 million Miles Austin( I think, maybe FDR’s contract too). Redskins 21 million Fat Albert and 15 Million DeAngelo Hall 21+15= 36. . Jones and Snyder are part of a larger business the NFL. They got greedy and tried getting away with one because…well they’re greedy. Jones and Snyder flipped off their business partners when all the others complied with the leagues wishes .It was an uncapped year and the league had to do something so guys like Snyder and Jones didn’t go all Steinbrenner on the rest of the league. What these two guys did is the reason the league strongly suggested teams not do what they did. Being Greedy they couldn’t help themselves and did it anyways. What’s the league supposed to do , look the other way?Now there’s suggestions by cowskin fans of only playing their home games so they cost the other teams revenue? Holding up the season till they get their way? Yeah take your balls and go home then. For all the brokeback cowboy Labor attorney fans and the DC politicians all you have to do is look at the math and see that the other 28 teams that complied with this could have done it too if it was ok, but they didn’t . Only Jerrah and Dannyboy decided to flip the rest of the league off and do what THEY wanted to do. They were told not to, they did it anyways and be happy they didn’t take draft picks away too. We all love football and the NFL, but it’s for sure not perfect. With a rare uncapped year because of the labor problems the league had to do something to keep the spending ballance and parity they try hard to maintain. Are Dallas and DC bigger then the rest of the league? You walk into a shop with a No shoplifting sign and walk out with something in your pocket and get caught, can you say my bad, let me pay for it? Is it not against the law because you had no written agreement with the shop owner? They got caught with their hands in the cookie jar in an unusual year for the NFL as far as the no cap that year. No written rule doesn’t excuse what they did and they did it unpurpose.

  70. petedutcher wrote:

    it wasn’t about how much they spent overall on team salaries in that given year, it was about how much they “dumped” in an uncap year.

    For example, it wasn’t that the Cowboys and Skins spent similar numbers total (making this up, say each spent close to $200 mill that year).

    It was more about how Miles Austin was signed to something like $54 million, with 17 mill going in an uncapped year. I don’t remember what Haynesworth’s numbers were, but they were bad too, probably worse. I want to say he got 20 mill. Hall got a lot too, I think. The idea here is that the teams designated a large portion of these huge contracts upfront (front loading) so that they could sign monster deals, but have no cap issues in the future if the salary cap was reinvoked. ALL teams were “warned” not to break the 30% rule: Don’t try and sign players to a contract that violates a 30% increase in pay during an uncapped year. Yet, despite being “warned” against something that was never, at any time at all written in stone as a rule, the league STILL approved all of these deals when they were done by the team. Even though they violated the “warnings”.

    My issues here are: 1) they are talking about how this skewed the competitive balance. If they are going to make this crap up as they go along about “salary cap violations” that occurred when there was no salary cap, then they need to be “competitively fair” and punish teams for salary floor violations as well. They also need to punish the Patriots for Tom Brady’s 72 million extension (I think 12 mill was paid in 2010), and they need to punish the Bears for Julius Peppers huge number.

    I’m a diehard Dallas fan. If they want to punish teams for salary violations that didn’t actually exist as rules, even though the league previously okay’d them, fine. But do it across the board for everyone (ceiling AND floor violations).

  71. No collusion! just a secret agreement? Billionaires are ALL the same from Wall St to the NFL. entitled and above the law. Steve Young’s assessment a month ago was right TV contracts beware.

  72. thetruth845, you just described the classic definition of collusion, and it is very illegal.

    Owners basically privateley voted to not free up cap space so they wouldn’t have to give that money to the players; yet, they didn’t put that in writing for the players to vote on. It was all in secret.

    They wrote the rules one way, but agreed secretly to act another.

    That is collusion, and that is quite illegal.

  73. goodell has got to go. he is bad for the nfl. how can the eagles get by with all the big signing’s they did. somebody has got to question king goodell on this one.

  74. oh don’t forget to punish the owners that want to win, its unfair to the ones more concerned with the bottom line, great way to run a scam, I mean League

  75. EVERY TEAM in the league was warned not to front load contracts in 2010. But because Snyder and Jones–especially Jones–decided they’d do it anyway. With Snyder giving Haynesworth a 100M contract and gauranteeing 41M of it–and Jones giving Miles Austin a huge 17M base salary, they deserve to get slapped down. Jones is going to be slapped harder anyway, when he has to settle all the lawsuits from the SB he messed up. And the NFLPA could have fought it if they wanted–then they would have to explain to their members why the cap dropped to 116M from 120M in ’11–the first time in history since they’ve had the cap. A drop in salary cap means less money for even the middling FAs.

  76. This is what happens when you cheat. they were warned 6 times. how hard is it to follow directions and not try to get a competitive advantage by breaking rules and cheating. I wonder why ESPN hasnt made this front page news… maybe because the Pats arent involved?

  77. Goodell is like a 5 year old playing monopoly making rules up as he goes because they sound good to him. Can we please get a salary cap for the front office so we can preserve the competitive balance as well.

  78. Erod…its not collusion. The Owners didn’t say “dont spend money”. They also didn’t collude to take money out of players pockets. The owners agreed not to screw EACH OTHER. Its ethics not law.

    Its like saying “The police are off this month….if you decide to break into your neighbors house you will still be punished when the police return.

    The owners made the agreement and the owners are enforcing it through the commish. Jones and Snyder tried to screw their peers by acting unethically. How is that collusion?

  79. So the Bears pay Julius Peppers 1/4 of the value of his six year deal in 2010 (i.e. frontloaded which is what this is all about)….and they aren’t getting dinged in this at all?

  80. As far as people yapping about “how did the league approve it?”. This is a violation of ethics within the owners circle not the business end of the NFL as a whole. Why wouldn’t the contracts be approved? I can go to the DMV with my friends info because I look like him and get a license but its still breaking the law…whats my defense? They approved it? Duh.

  81. This just in: Field goals of 50+ yards are worth 4 points.

    Making up rules on the fly is fun!!

  82. Skins will still be flush with cash!!! Let’s go
    FA!!! Lets make the haters cry some more!!! Skins merchandizing allows them to bring players in with big bonus offers!!!

  83. So your telling me no other team in the league front loaded their players contract in 2010??? and than 24hrs before free agency starts tell them their losing 36/10 million in cap space…. Now that’s cold!!!!

  84. @thetruth….to stick with your police analogy.

    This is like all the people that live on a street deciding the speed limit is going to be 25 mph….but you want to go 50…since there is no law that states the speed limit on that street you ask the police, “hey, is it okay if I go 50 here?” …and they say sure, go ahead.

    You drive 50 mph on the street…wave at the police as you go by…and nothing is said. Two years later you get a reckless driving ticket for going 50 in a 25.

    This is the same thing…the owners agreed on a “speed limit” for contracts yet no official rule was written, the Skins and Cowboys decided they wanted to go over that speed limit…so they wrote contracts that were APPROVED by the NFL (i.e. police)….and now two years later…the Skins and Cowboys are getting their speeding ticket.

    Not quite sure how that is fair..and how that isn’t collusion by the other owners to artificially lower the salary cap.

  85. @thetruth845 “The owners agreed not to screw EACH OTHER.”

    This is definition of collusion and is highly illegal. NFL could lose their anti-trust exemption if this is provable.

  86. I gotta hand it to Jerry Jones ….. he took it up the poop chute like a man.

  87. pallidrone says:
    Mar 13, 2012 11:49 AM
    wwmsgrr says: Mar 13, 2012 11:16 AM

    Here’s hoping Goodell is found guilty of violating the Sherman Anti-Trust Act and sees time behind bars…

    “Every person who shall monopolize, or attempt to monopolize, or combine or conspire with any other person or persons, to monopolize any part of the trade or commerce among the several States, or with foreign nations, shall be deemed guilty of a felony”


    I would be interested to see how that could happen, considering that the NFL has an anti-trust exception.


    just researched – NFL does not have a broad antitrust exemption (only with respect broadcasting rights). since the courts have ruled that the NFL is 32 independently acting entities they are not prosecuted for Anti-Trust violations currently. Once Goodell opened Pandora’s box and decided that it would collude the NFL was then acting as 1 entity which would be a Anti-Trust violation. Goodell as the “mastermind” should see jailtime in a fair legal system (but chances are obviously close to 0 in our legal system).

  88. The NFL’s position on cap violations is preposterous and apparently impossible to define using clear language. The Redskins should proceed to get needed free agents, including the best WRs and OLs available. If the NFL actually executes this ridiculous policy by serving legal paperwork, the Redskins should get an injunction, so they can continue seeking needed free agents regardless of attempted league interference… the end.

  89. numbskull111……you have to look at what these teams did and how it creates a problem. If the Redskins signed Fat Albert to a 1 year $40million deal it would have been fine. They structured the contract to pay a HUGE portion of his salary in the uncapped year so they could afford him in the capped years and release him without an issue if they wanted to. Only the uncapped year made that possible. Jones and Snyder were part of the group that agreed against this. I dont see how people are confused by this. Its salary dumping 101.

  90. What did the skins and boys get caught doing?
    answer- breaking a silent, unwritten(illegal rule).

    Does a memo constitute a legal binding rule?
    answer- not in my workplace(memo=there will be repercussions for not giving to charity at work- again against the law and unenforceable)

    It seems to me that the agreement to have an uncapped year was the problem. Danny and Jerry have money, and don’t mind spending it. Most of the other owners simply do not have the same revenue streams and therefor would not use this uncapped year to their benefit.

    Analogy- getting this “warning” from an authoritative entity like the NFL is like the having a holiday with no speed limits, but still punishing drivers who speed. We all know collectively that speeding is bad for all of us, but we all agreed to have this holiday.

  91. Collusion is an agreement between two or more persons, sometimes illegal and therefore secretive, to limit open competition by deceiving, misleading, or defrauding others of their legal rights, or to obtain an objective forbidden by law typically by defrauding or gaining an unfair advantage.

    that’s is the definition of the word “collusion”

    Now explain to me again how the owners colluded? By agreeing to keep the playing field level they did anything BUT collude. Man people are stupid.

  92. You guys are all silly. Clearly in the new CBA there’s a clause written that states, any rule that favors the league over teams/players can now be enforced retroactively to whatever ends the league deems necessary!


  93. Ok listening to the local sportsradio show they had Andrew Brandt on from ESPN business and he states there was no written rule or agreement not to do what they did and by NFL law were within their rights to do what they did…that being said from everything he’s gathered they have a case if they care to go forward this basically boils down to is collusion on Goodell and the remaining owners part…

  94. Wow- been awhile since I’ve seen this many posts and almost 100% in favor of the Skins/Cowboys

    Will Danny & Jerry go to war with the other owners over this?

    When did the skins know this could be coming… was it the same time as all of us?

  95. @numbskull: It’s not about frontloading per se. The Bears did give Peppers more base money up front than usual, but they also had base salaries over $9M for every other year on the deal, too. At least until they renegotiated it and converted some of that base into signing bonuses, but since those were pro-rated over the contract, it applies a majority of that money to capped years.

    With Haynesworth, the Redskins took money that was already part of a signed contract and converted that to a signing bonus, but then put in a clause that voided the last four years of the deal if Haynesworth paid the $26M in bonuses back. Because of that gimmick, the bonus can not be prorated and so was dumped entirely into the “uncapped” year. The uncapped year just meant that there was no limitation on the amount of player salary that year; contracts signed under that year are still subject to future cap rules (so signing bonuses from the prior CBA are still applied to the current year cap when applicable). These two teams ignored the repeated warnings and thought that they were too big to be punished.

    I have seen no evidence to date of any other team doing this specific maneuver. Giving a front-loaded contract, yes — Peppers got $20M in year 1 and only $11.5 in year 2. But the Bears didn’t turn that into a “signing bonus” that can be repaid to void the deal, in order to stash an inordinate amount of money in an uncapped year.

  96. @realitypolice and@gurnblanstonreturns,
    Well stated valid points. One caveat however. The collusion aspect is a little iffy. While on the surface it seems like the teams are being punished for a refusal to cooperate with an unwritten collusion policy, that is not what the fines were levied for. They simply manipulated money to gain future advantage over other teams. I see no evidence of colluding to “dampen” player salaries. The issue I see is that the cowboys and redskins paid players market value or higher but they placed the majority of the money into the uncapped year. There is a competitive advantage issue because they still benefit from players without further cap hindrances under the new cap system. It seems to me that Jones/Snyder did this for a couple reasons. 1) it makes there teams more competitive (financially) and 2) it could be a future statement against the revenue sharing plan that many believe spurred the recent labor issues. That said, I see no way for the league to fix this issue without opening up a much larger can of worms.

  97. What about Bruce Allens statement?


    He is claiming that the Redskins have received no written communication by the NFL that there cap will be adjusted. It looks to me like the Redskins could possibly ignore the adjustment, and file a grievance, appeal, or sue, whatever it is you would do to protest the situation.

    By the way, what are the Redskins and Cowboys options in this?

  98. So let me get this straight, so many people are upset with this when apparently the teams were warned multiple times not to abuse the uncapped season and then they GO AND ABUSE it and are penalized (written rule or not). 30 other teams took that warning seriously (Maybe 28? Raiders / Saints no bonus cap?). These owners were serious I guess when they said they needed protection from themselves. Idiots.

  99. with the way this guy is alienating every nfl team and the fans might be not to early to say…

    bounty on roger?

  100. @FinFan68

    How is limiting how much a team can spend not colluding to “dampen” player salaries. If all teams agree not to spend over a certain amount, that creates less money for the players. For example, if 4 teams say to each other, “Okay, let’s only spend $20 on the four players we need,” That means 16 players get $5 each. Without that rule in place (i.e. 2010), a team could have spent $25 on just one player alone. So, how does agreeing to limit spending not equal out to collusion? If anyone can explain that one, then you can start winning me over to the side of the other 28 (Teams that are not the Redskins, Cowboys, Saints, and Raiders).

  101. Why punish just two teams? Seriously, no other team front loaded any other contract in the NFL in 2010 besides Washington & Dallas? C’mon man. You picked the two biggest revenue makers in the NFL….it’s a biased decision….and Wellington Mara had a part in the decision?!! Are you kidding me!! IT’S BULLSH*T!! Hail!

  102. This is the same thing…the owners agreed on a “speed limit” for contracts yet no official rule was written, the Skins and Cowboys decided they wanted to go over that speed limit…so they wrote contracts that were APPROVED by the NFL (i.e. police)….and now two years later…the Skins and Cowboys are getting their speeding ticket.
    Man that makes no sense. How can you punish a team for something that happen back on 2010. But yet, Would not act on the players that voilated the substance abuse policy during the lock out. Isnt the league new policy effort to protect players health and safety? Is that not a health and safety issue?? This makes no sense. Regardless if it was a secret pack between owners. If thats the case, then the owners should deal with it themselfs.This is not a league issue. The league shouldnt be able to fine a team for something that didnt break any rules in writing. A handshake deal is just what it is. A HandShake. Who’s fault was it that it was a uncapped year anyway?? And where is it written that you could only spend up to 30%?? God-dell leaped before he looked if you ask me. I havent seen anything come out that show that these two teams did anything different then any other team in the league any other year. Like someone else said, What about the Bears?!?!?! The new NFL is turning into a joke, A high price joke, but a joke none the less.

  103. These posts are hilarious! Nothing is ever the Redskins fault! Take your punishment and move on instead of lashing out about the Giants. It is not Mara’s fault that after your team was warned SIX TIMES and they still did whatever they wanted!

    I hate to burst your bubble about beating the Giants twice last year, but we don’t care as we are still busy enjoying our Super Bowl victory. Losing to you means nothing to us (although it was humiliating at the time). The Giants have a tendancy to play down to the competition, which is very frustrating, but we can win it when it matters!

    So please stop taking your frustration out on the Giants and direct it to your own team, who even when they try to cheat AND place bounties on players, still finish last in the division (last 4 years in a row).

  104. xLith says:
    Mar 13, 2012 1:18 PM
    So let me get this straight, so many people are upset with this when apparently the teams were warned multiple times not to abuse the uncapped season and then they GO AND ABUSE it and are penalized (written rule or not). 30 other teams took that warning seriously (Maybe 28? Raiders / Saints no bonus cap?). These owners were serious I guess when they said they needed protection from themselves. Idiots.


    This “rule” most likely constitutes a felony – by following the “rule” the other owners are guilty of anti-trust violations. The other teams are the cheaters – not the ‘skins and ‘girls.

    Its like if your coworkers told you they were going to commit a murder and you had to come otherwise you would be breaking their rule. What would you do?

  105. @therealsmiley – the point was there is no sense in complaining about Peppers’ contract since it didn’t lift the Bears into nonsensical salary territory. The Bears could have signed Peppers for 3 times as much and still spent less than the Redskins.

  106. kidzaround says:
    Mar 13, 2012 1:30 PM

    How is limiting how much a team can spend not colluding to “dampen” player salaries. If all teams agree not to spend over a certain amount, that creates less money for the players.
    In all the stories I have read, I have not seen this actually mentioned although I admit I could have missed it. That seems to be an implied/suspected mentality rather than a factual one. The issue has been about dumping salaries in the uncapped year (with no carryover to future years under a new cap)–that’s taking advantage of the other teams, not limiting player salaries. I have not seen anything about imposing any kind of spending threshold other than the comments sections. Granted, that could have been a “verbal agreement” behind closed doors but where is the evidence of that? I suspect that these teams could have spent any amount of money on 1 year deals (uncapped year only) and nothing much would have been said. That would have placed the team at a severe disadvantage the following year and it would have looked like they were trying to buy a championship but there would have been no real way to stop it. Just saying, it looks like a lot of speculation has somehow transformed into believed “fact” and the emotions sprang forth from there.

  107. If the Cowboys and Redskins created $46 million in cap room by not colluding with the other owners imagine how much would have been created if the other 30 owners didn’t cheat. That is a lot of extra cap room(extra salaries) that the players association is missing out on. Why in the world are they not furious over this?

  108. Intent on a smaller scale is still intent. What is the threshold? Why punish two teams and not all teams? So if you’re a small market team with the same intent, it’s ok because you’re small market? Or it’s ok if you did it with one player? I’m not trying to be an ass…but that’s the question. This is BS. And to have Wellington Mara help in the decision? C’mon…I don’t care how old he is or where his name shows up…he’s biased. Hail!

  109. wwmsgrr is right. You can’t have it both ways…..if you’re saying the Redskins and Cowboys circumvented the salary cap (after 2010) then the other teams colluded to not do it. That is illegal. Hail!

  110. @FinFan68 The issue has been about dumping salaries in the uncapped year (with carryover to future years under a new cap)–that’s taking advantage of the other teams, not limiting player salaries
    It would be to the players advantage to get more money up front if contracts are front loaded. Now if the NFL teams got together and said not to front load contracts, that’s limiting player salaries. We all know that in the NFL the player contracts are not completely gauranteed and any player can get cut at any time. Front loading the contracts in an upcapped year works to both the team and players interests. The “rule” said that you could not do that, which effectively removed part of the players’ benefits from the uncapped year, further swinging the benefit to the teams that followed the “rules”. What about teams like Tampa Bay, who took advantage of the system and had a payroll way below most teams in the league? No floor meant they could spend as little as possible. Where are their fines? No one has explained to me why this isn’t collusion.

  111. Well Danny Boy and Jerrah will own half of the league by the time the dust settles. Seriously. When does a spoken rule become a rule? There was nothing in writing that stated you could be punished for an uncapped year. I would bet a large sum of money that if they are held responsible for 36 million and 10 million respectively then they have a case for collusion. Once again…… There was NOTHING in writing that said they couldn’t front load these contracts. This is complete horse manure. I hope Goodell goes to jail for this blatant breach of collective bargaining, and anti-trust. Complete crap!

  112. I am a Cowboys fan. A big one. And I like Jerry Jones. I realize how difficult it is to win a Super Bowl and am certain Jerry wants to win ANOTHER one or three. But this is too much. Tex Schram would have destroyed anyone in the league office who tried to pull this on him. Jerry seems to always take what the league dishes out. I hope this finally pushes Jerry to grow a pair and slap down the league on something!

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