Jerry Jones admits negotiating Dez Bryant’s deal directly with Jay-Z (who isn’t an NFLPA agent)

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Remember the stories about the Cowboys negotiating directly with players? They’ve also negotiated with at least one third person who wasn’t certified by the NFL Players Association to negotiate player contracts.

In the aftermath of the signing of running back Ezekiel Elliott to a long-term contract, owner Jerry Jones made the media rounds. He was asked at one point about the NFL’s new deal with Jay-Z. And here’s what Jones blurted out: “I negotiated personally with Jay-Z on Dez Bryant’s contract. And we actually were in the 21 Club, and we started about 12 midnight and finished about five in the morning and we negotiated down in the wine cellar Dez Bryant‘s contract.”

Although the labor deal doesn’t clearly and expressly prohibit direct negotiations with players who are represented by an NFLPA-certified agent (a clear and express prohibition arguably isn’t needed), the Collective Bargaining Agreement plainly and unequivocally prohibits negotiation with persons who aren’t certified by the NFLPA.

“Clubs are prohibited from engaging in individual contract negotiations with any agent who is not listed by the NFLPA as being duly certified by the NFLPA in accordance with its role as exclusive bargaining agent for NFL players,” the CBA states at Article 48, Section 1.

The NFLPA looked into the issue of the Cowboys talking directly to players, but nothing ever came of it publicly. In this case, the NFLPA has two separate issues to confront: The Cowboys’ decision to directly negotiate with someone other than an NFLPA-certified agent, and Jay-Z’s decision to get directly involved in contract negotiations without NFLPA certification.

40 responses to “Jerry Jones admits negotiating Dez Bryant’s deal directly with Jay-Z (who isn’t an NFLPA agent)

  1. Ya know, Jerry’s kid does a great job in taking the car keys away from the old man; yet every once in a while doctor/lawyer jerrah can’t help himself and he has to brag about something borderline against the rules that he was a part of. Let your son run the day to day operations of the team, the improvement is CLEARLY visible.

  2. This is ridiculous. Jay-Z owns Roc Nation and the people working for him are NFLPA-certified agents.

    There are many people in the room during negotiations that don’t have certification, yet are allowed in the discussions. Other than the agent, I would expect all smart negotiators will also have his lawyers and accountants present too. If the agency’s OWNER wants to participate, I’m pretty sure there’s no rule against that either.

    At the end of the day, it’s still the agent’s responsibility to examine any contract offer and to advise his client.

  3. Have the Cowboys ever been penalized for anything like this? Other teams lose draft picks or receive huge fines but with the Cowboys the NFL looks the other way. Is Godell Jerry’s puppet?

  4. If Jay-Z wasn’t Dez’s agent, then it wasn’t a negotiation of his contract. I’m sure they discussed the contract. But at the end of the day, the contract is between the Cowboys and the players agent. If Jay-Z signed the contract on behalf of Dez, then that would be a problem. But I don’t see any difference here than Jerry “discussing Dez’s contract” on the radio, or with other media members.

    Separately, regarding Jay-Z’s business. Everyone knows Jay-Z runs the agency, and that players choose Rock Nation because of Jay-Z. he’s the founder and CEO. So for him to be aware about contract details, and what the team is thinking, isn’t out of question. Again, if he’s signing where it says Agent, and he’s not an Agent– THAT is where you’d have some ramifications. Otherwise, you’re desperately trying to create a story where there is none.

  5. What is the big deal here? Why is it you cannot speak to a player on your team and discuss what you would be willing to pay? The player can contact his agent.and and start negotiating.but what’s the problem?

  6. I mean, is Jay-Z not at the point now where negotiating for 5 hours to get 10% commission on a contract isn’t the most profitable use of his time?

  7. I asked this once before and got a lot of thumbs-down responses, but I have to ask again: How again did this clown get into the Hall of Fame?

  8. Please stop. Jay-Z not being certified by the NFLPA is nothing more than a minor detail, an administrative matter. It’s insignificant because it is Jay-Z. Move along, nothing to see here.

  9. thebirdofprey says:
    September 19, 2019 at 10:21 am
    Have the Cowboys ever been penalized for anything like this? Other teams lose draft picks or receive huge fines but with the Cowboys the NFL looks the other way. Is Godell Jerry’s puppet?

    11 12 Rate This

    ——————

    No, buy the Elliott framejob was revenge by MAra and Snyder who told Goodell to do it. Philly then went on to win the division with help from Goodell with the incompletion under replay showing as such, to Corey Clement.

    The cheating by Goodell does have a trickle down effect and comes in various forms.

  10. @ thebirdofprey

    “Have the Cowboys ever been penalized for anything like this? Other teams lose draft picks or receive huge fines but with the Cowboys the NFL looks the other way. Is Godell Jerry’s puppet?”

    Yeah, Jerry is Goodell’s puppet. Just look a the $2 million-plus fine Jones got from his actions regarding voicing his displeasure with Goodell’s contract extension. 31 other owners didn’t have the guts to say anything about .

    Let’s not forget the $10 million cap space deduction for contracts in an uncapped year (2012, where they broke ZERO rules.

    So ease up on the Jerry Jones being Goodell’s puppet nonsense. If anybody is Goodell’s puppet it is Frankenhead Mara, who knew about and covered up Kicker Josh Brown’s DV actions a year before, and Brown only got suspended for one game. Mara failed to inform the league about knowledge of DV, yet he never received a fine, suspension, or loss of draft picks.

  11. thebirdofprey says:
    September 19, 2019 at 10:21 am

    Have the Cowboys ever been penalized for anything like this? Other teams lose draft picks or receive huge fines but with the Cowboys the NFL looks the other way.
    ————————————————————————————-
    Not true at all. Cowboys were opunished for exceeding the salary cap in an uncapped year, and then had Ezekial Elliot suspended despite using the flimsiest of evidence (or no evidence at all) AND despite the recommendation of the NFL’s own female investigator.

    Only the Giants, Steelers, Ravens and Colts are in the protected class of NFL franchises.

  12. stiggs61 says:
    September 19, 2019 at 10:35 am
    What is the big deal here? Why is it you cannot speak to a player on your team and discuss what you would be willing to pay? The player can contact his agent.and and start negotiating.but what’s the problem?
    ————————–

    Because there is a CBA that prohibits this type of negotiation. Many players have been taken for a bath by unqualified and uncertified agents so a process was put in place.

  13. “And we actually were in the 21 Club, and we started about 12 midnight and finished about five in the morning and we negotiated down in the wine cellar Dez Bryant‘s contract.””

    So they got drunk in the middle of the night and negotiated the contract. Sounds like Dez could have a lawsuit against JayZ if nothing else.

  14. Common sense says that Jerry can negotiate with ANYONE about any player contract, but IT RESTS WITH THE PLAYER whether that “anyone” is someone who’s participation in the process he will accept on his behalf.

    In other words, Jerry and rapper-X or cousin-Y or college roommate Z can get together and talk for 5 hours. But it is a waste of 5 hours unless DEZ gives his approval.

    From where I sit, it’s not Jerry, it’s Dez who has offended the rule… and because? Because the union wants professionals doing that work for the benefit of the whole. If a player goes rogue, THAT’S ON THE PLAYER, and the union should slap the player with a fine or pursue litigation against HIM.

  15. I’m reading through the comments here and there are a lot of people saying things that make a lot of sense. But that’s the problem: collective bargaining agreements make no sense. They’re not supposed to. The whole point of a union is to create irrational rules that protect the union, not the individual worker and certainly not the management. So don’t bother trying to use logic or common sense in this situation. It won’t work.

  16. Jones just likes to blow smoke like he’s a sharpie gm but his deals have kept them in the cellar forever. No one wants to penalize him because it helps the competition to have a screwup in charge.

  17. If Dez didn’t like it he should have refused to sign the deal and told Jerry to talk to his real agent. (Who just so happened to be calling Jay Z “boss” at the time this all went down.)

  18. Has Jones done a good job on his part putting together a championship team since the cap was in place? Maybe he should stop doing the negotiations since he hasn’t won a thing in a very long time.

  19. So what about players who don’t have an agent an negotiate on their own behalf? Are they in violation as well?

  20. ibillwt says:
    September 19, 2019 at 11:32 am
    Jones just likes to blow smoke like he’s a sharpie gm but his deals have kept them in the cellar forever. No one wants to penalize him because it helps the competition to have a screwup in charge.
    ______________________________________________________________________________

    Winning the NFC East 3 out of the past 5 years is in the cellar? That’s a funny definition of cellar.

    Jerry isn’t in charge – Stephen is and has the best personnel man there is in Will McClay.

  21. cool…now the working class is going to yell at each other on the internet about how the elites do their business

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