Cornwell comes out swinging against De Smith


On Friday, NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith took a subtle jab at the NFL Coaches Association and executive director David Cornwell for remaining silent in the wake of a proof-in-the-pudding 0-for-15 failure by NFL teams to hire a single minority coach or G.M. in the latest hiring cycle.

“I am certainly interested in hearing from the Coaches Association on their thoughts,” Smith said Friday.  “I would have expected something from them by now.”

Cornwell opted not to be subtle.

“DeMaurice Smith is the best thing that has happened to NFL owners since they became NFL owners,” Cornwell said in a statement provided to PFT.

“De controlled both the NFLPA and the NFL Coaches Association from 2009 to 2012.  During this period, De threw 3 generations of NFL players under the bus in exchange for a photo op with Roger Goodell and Robert Kraft; threw the Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys under the bus to conceal from NFL players the truth about the declining salary cap; and, De threw NFL coaches under the bus when he: (1) sat silently as NFL teams unilaterally changed coaches’ retirement benefits; (2) filed an unauthorized legal brief under the NFLCA’s name during the NFL lockout; (3) kicked the NFLCA out of the NFLPA’s offices for challenging the filing of the brief, and he rolled the bus over NFL coaches when he snatched $308,000 in coaches’ dues money and sued the NFLCA because NFL coaches understandably want competent representation.

“I intend to address all of the issues that confront all NFL coaches and clean up the mess that De left behind. While I do, perhaps De will answer these questions: When you controlled the NFLCA, did you fight for uniform retirement and health benefits that will follow NFL coaches from team-to-team? Why does the salary cap continue to decline while League revenues and team values continue to increase? If you stand by the CBA that you negotiated, why do you shift money from other player benefits to the salary cap to create the illusion that the salary cap is flat or slightly rising?”

We await more from Cornwell regarding the minority hiring issue.  And we await more from Smith regarding Cornwell and/or the questions he has raised.

32 responses to “Cornwell comes out swinging against De Smith

  1. Holy Smoke!! That got ugly quick!

    Did Smith not realize when he challenged the NFLCA that he was poking a hornets nest? Did he not know what his counterpart/opponent was capable of ?!?

  2. In the voice of my sweet Aunt Thelma,

    “OH NO HE DIDN’T!!!”

    Seriously though, DE Smith has come off as incompetent since the last CBA.. I’ve never had proof until now. NFL is making all kinds of cash. He promised significant increases in the cap.. Instead it only bumps up a few hundred thousand per team? All the while NBA and MLB players are making serious paper and they aren’t even close to being as popular as the NFL (yes they play more games, I know, but the physical risks aren’t even close to football)

  3. About time someone called this guy out in public. He’s a complete poison to the NFLPA, the league, and, most importantly, the fans.

  4. Represent players, not coaches. What a tool. The Rooney Rule is a joke. We’re artificially controlling who will get hired. Businesses can who they want. Not who someone tells them too.

  5. It’s about time someone put De in his place. The players should pay attention and get rid of his guy before he does anymore damage to their cause.

  6. I am already getting sick of this topic, booo fing hooo. Lovie was the coach of the Bears for 9 years, never once did I say ” I hope he gets fired so we can get a white coach”. Nope, infact i was mad he got fired. There are Pleanty of Black coaches in this league, if the rule was meant to help to should say teams sould need to interview one non black or white coach or a female.

  7. De Smith wanted that lockout a couple years ago. He had no intentions of negotiating with the league. He wasn’t in it for the players because he’s never been a player he’s a lawyer who has nothing in mind but his bank account. Gene Upshaw I’m sure would be ashamed of how Smith has made a mockery of the NFLPA.

  8. I wish we could come up with a new phrase to replace ‘thrown under the bus’ and its variants

  9. Thank goodness Mr Cornwell is also a man of color otherwise he would be accused of being racist for calling De Smith out… know it’s true!

  10. No complaints about the TOTAL LACK of any diversity in the player ranks…where are more Latinos, Asians and/or women? Black Americans make up about 12% of the population, and looks like 90% of players on Football teams…maybe 99% in Basketball. Ask Rev. Wright about diversity…

  11. You always knew Dee was a clown…it was just a matter of how much….sorry to see he stopped wearing his swell hats..:). Well..after that little diatribe apparently he is much more of a clown than we thought…His whole candidacy was based on his “big swinger “political connections versus competency….Gotta feel bad for the coaches cuz they have been yelling about this clown for awhile and have no true juice ..Just wait for another couple of years of flat caps coupled with the fact Dee has no more accounting gimmicks (e.g. Take from the Cowboys and ‘skins, though I thought that was very funny and couldn’t happen to a couple of nicer owners) and Dee may be wearing those hats again as the players pitch him and his big swinger connections out into the cold. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

  12. Why isn’t Smith complaining about the lack of African American place kickers? There are 32 jobs to be had and not one is black. This is an outrage! We the fans demand diversity. Boycott the kicker!

  13. Mr. Cornwell,

    Well said. De Maurice Smith is a self-serving punk, a hack and so completely over his head. It’s refreshing to hear someone call out incompetence. When will the players wake up and realize they are represented by a fool?

    The players play in a league that is both the most profitable and dangerous sport in the United States with a 100 percent chance of injury, and yet they don’t even have guaranteed contracts. How embarrassing. Even the NHLPA secured guaranteed contracts for its membership several years ago. And the average salary for an NHL player last year was over $2.1 million per season.

    A competent head of the NFLPA would not have agreed to the current CBA. Smith’s only concern was securing a deal that appeared to increase slightly the per team cap prior to the players’ scheduled vote a few weeks later to extend Smith’s lucrative leadership position. By agreeing to the CBA, which penalized the Redskins for $36 million and the Cowboys $10 million, Smith approved of collusion by the owners which harmed every member of the NFLPA. It could be argued that the NFLPA was a party to the collusion. There was nothing in the deal that compelled the $46 million penalty, of which a pro rata share was given to 28 teams, to be used by the teams that received the cap increase.

    Ultimately, the players are to be blamed for their incompetent leader. Just as voters in the United States are ultimately responsible for the “leadership” that represents us. But when a sizable number of players are irresponsible with the money they have earned (including many having multiple baby mamas), the owners have all the leverage.

  14. Whoa!! David Cornwell should have had De Smith’s job. Wonder if some of the players are finally starting to realize that.

  15. Cornwell is right. Making Russell Wilson wait two more years before he can negotiate a contract that hugely underpays him for his performance is yet another knock on De Smith. I said years ago that the NFLPA needed a lawyer, but it is starting to seem as if they got the wrong one.

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