NFL fines Washington Football Team $10 million

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The investigation that initially was started by the Washington Football Team has been ended by the NFL.

The headline from the end result of the investigation is that the NFL has fined the Washington Football Team $10 million. Per the league’s statement, that money “will be used to support organizations committed to character education, anti-bullying, healthy relationships and related topics.” The team also will “fund fund programs directed more broadly at improving the workplace, particularly for women and other underrepresented groups, and training and development programs throughout the league, with recipients identified with the assistance of respected third-party advisors.”

The team likewise will be footing the bill for the investigation that resulted in today’s punishment. Per the league, it will pay the fees and expenses associated with attorney Beth Wilkinson’s investigation. Given that she interviewed (per the NFL) more than 150 people, that likely will be at least another $1 million, maybe $2 million.

Then there’s this: Buried at the bottom of the release published on one day before one of the prime bad-news dump afternoons of the year, the league essentially suspended Daniel Snyder. In the next-to-last paragraph of a 29-paragraph press release, the NFL says this: “As co-CEO, Tanya Snyder will assume responsibilities for all day-to-day team operations and represent the club at all league meetings and other league activities for at least the next several months. Dan Snyder will concentrate on a new stadium plan and other matters.”

That’s a very significant statement. Basically, Tanya Snyder has (as a practical matter) the ultimate control of the team, as far as the league is concerned. And ultimate control — as we’ve recently seen in Tennessee and currently are witnessing in Denver — is a huge issue.

She’ll represent the team at league meetings and run the day-to-day operations “for at least the next several months,” which basically means Daniel Snyder has been suspended indefinitely, and that his ability to return to his usual role, the one he’s held for more than 20 years, will be determined at a later date.

The league doesn’t call it a suspension, and many won’t even regard it as one. But it is. It definitely is. And it explains Tuesday’s sudden move to make Tanya Snyder co-CEO and co-owner.

Someone had to take over the team while Daniel Snyder stays out of football operations and focuses solely on business matters, and the decision was made that it will be Daniel Snyder’s spouse.

UPDATE 4:41 p.m. ET: Although the statement from the league does not say it, Lisa Friel of the NFL said in a conference call that the shift was “voluntary.”

13 responses to “NFL fines Washington Football Team $10 million

  1. How serious! His wife will be running the team … totally without his input … I am sure …

  2. So the wife takes on his control? That’s the punishment?


    Goodell can never make the right decision. Caught framing NE, going light with punishments elsewhere. It just doesn’t stop.

    He should be forced to sell.

  3. So basically the Chairman of the Board will have his wife be the interim CEO while the Chairman of the Board is still in charge. Got it!

  4. What I would like too know is where that 10 mill goes…. Hopefully to a good charity!

  5. I’ve never understood why the owners agree to the ability to be suspended. The league office and commissioner work for them. They have a property interest and can’t be prevented from ownership activities. It violates their Due Process rights, or it would if challenged. That’s why this had to be “voluntary.”

  6. Assuming you made $50,000 a year that equates to about a $185 fine. A drop in the proverbial bucket.

  7. Wow. WFT is worth 3.5 Billion. 10 million is 0.28% of 3.5 billion. That’s like fining someone making $60,000 a year one hundred sixty eight dollars.

    I mean, oooh ouch.

  8. This is one of those NFL political mistakes. They can’t find a name. They harass their employees. They can’t win! They deserve a bigger fine, just for their incompetence. To make matters worse, the NFL allows Snyder to make his wife the Straw executive. Itis no wonder their viewer ratings are down!

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