On Monday, Jets owner Woody Johnson committed a fairly obvious violation of the tampering rules by saying, “I’d love for Darrelle [Revis] to come back.” Johnson then said he didn’t mean to say what he said.
The league still isn’t saying anything about the situation, although the Patriots expect something to be said (and done) about it.
It’s not the first time Johnson has commented publicly about a player under contract with another team. This year. In March, he acknowledged that the Jets were interested in receiver DeSean Jackson, who at the time was still a member of the Eagles.
The tampering rules are pretty clear, even if the NFL is reluctant to enforce them. Perhaps the league thinks it’s no big deal. (If so, why have the rule in the first place?) Perhaps the league doesn’t want to admit to the world that teams are cheating.
Regardless, it’s odd that an owner would talk about any player under contract with another team, ever. It’s a fairly bright line that should be easy to avoid. And if an owner can’t avoid it when speaking publicly, then maybe the owner should refrain from speaking publicly, on any topic relating to the football operations.