Bruce Allen indirectly benefits from lack of WFT transparency

NFL-Monday Night Football: Chicago Bears at Washington Redskins
Getty Images

In its handling of the WFT investigation and punishment, the NFL opted (I believe) to protect owner Daniel Snyder and, in turn, to protect other owners who may face similar accusations or issues in the future. Someone else benefited indirectly from the league’s decision to choose secrecy over transparency.

Former team president Bruce Allen.

It’s widely believed that Snyder escaped a more serious sanction than up to $17 million fines and fees and a “voluntary” suspension that may or may not require Commissioner approval to be lifted because the league bought the notion that Snyder was, for years, an absentee landlord. The number of his annual days in the office making the rounds is 28. The rest of the time, someone else was in charge.

That someone else, for much of the time covered by attorney Beth Wilkinson’s investigation, was team president Bruce Allen.

Wilkinson’s investigation prompted Commissioner Roger Goodell to conclude “that for many years the workplace environment at the Washington Football Team, both generally and particularly for women, was highly unprofessional,” that “[b]ullying and intimidation frequently took place and many described the culture as one of fear, and numerous female employees reported having experienced sexual harassment and a general lack of respect in the workplace,” that “[o]wnership and senior management paid little or no attention to these issues,” and that “senior executives engaged in inappropriate conduct themselves, including use of demeaning language and public embarrassment.”

Allen was a senior executive for a decade, from 2010 through 2019. His name, however, appears nowhere in the 29-paragraph, 2,084-word press release announce the outcome of the Wilkinson investigation.

There’s no reason to believe that the league tiptoed around Allen as a favor to him. Instead, the thinking is that the deference shown to Snyder incidentally encompassed Allen, allowing him to not be directly tied to any of the general conclusions because the league decided to conceal any specific findings or accusations. Thus, to the extent that a full and complete report potentially would have contained sentences beginning with “Bruce Allen said” or “Bruce Allen did” or “Bruce Allen knew,” the fact that no written report was created kept Allen from facing the music for anything he may have done, actually or allegedly.

That won’t save him completely, especially if/when litigation is filed by any current or former employees for whom the statute of limitations has not yet run. Given his former employer’s propensity to litigate, chances are that Snyder and the WFT will make third-party claims or cross-claims directly against Allen, blaming as much of the misbehavior as possible on Allen, and pushing as much responsibility away from Snyder.

Make no mistake about it, even at a time when many believe that the league went way too easy on Snyder, he likely won’t (in my opinion) pass on the chance to point a finger at someone else. The most obvious target is Bruce Allen.

18 responses to “Bruce Allen indirectly benefits from lack of WFT transparency

  1. But, the root of this is Goodell.

    He does the right thing for once and forces Richardson to sell, but he reverses course to protect Snyder. Why? Money. The WFT brand is worth more than Carolina’s.

    How the media lets Goodell off the hook continuously is absolutely bizarre. It’s the biggest story in sports history how he will do anything to keep his job.

    Maybe if one of these clowns from ESPN with their heresay and speculative pieces they claim to be truth, would actually speak the truth with properly cited sources regarding Goodell’s leadership since 2006, the customer would be better educated with how bad of a human Goodell really is.

  2. Kinda seems like everyone got protected except those that were assaulted or harassed…smh

  3. Absence from the facility is no excuse for the culture that Snyder allowed to infiltrate every corner of his organization. Ultimately, the buck stops with the owner and he is responsible for everything that goes on with the WFT. Point the finger all you want Dan, the rest of the world lays the blame squarely at your feet.

  4. touchback6 says:
    July 3, 2021 at 10:17 am
    But, the root of this is Goodell.

    ——/

    Goodell is not a man of honor. Rumor has it he also fails to follow through on the terms of his bets when he loses

  5. It’s silly to criticize Goodell like he is an independent actor. He is only a paid minion of the 32 owners. NFL owners only care about four things:
    $, $, $, & $.

    The owners thought Richardson would cost them $$, so he had to go. They think the WFT Snyder thing will blow over if they keep it quiet. If they see signs that it will not go away and letting Snyder skate will cost them money, watch how fast WFT goes up for sale.

  6. Same old same old. The owners “club” is going to protect its owners. Snyder is guilty of gross negligence in so many ways. It’s one thing to run a great franchise into the ground. Snyders is certainly a poor owner in that regard. But, it is inexcusable to create or allow a toxic work environment. By employing Bruce Allen, Snyder did just that.

  7. nhpats2011 says:
    July 3, 2021 at 11:46 am
    touchback6 says:
    July 3, 2021 at 10:17 am
    But, the root of this is Goodell.

    ——/

    Goodell is not a man of honor. Rumor has it he also fails to follow through on the terms of his bets when he loses

    ————

    Same ol’ same ol’ from these clowns. Just salty pats fans who haven’t gotten over TB’s suspension from deflating footballs and hate Goodell for it. I know because I live in Boston and here it all the time. . The truth is that Goodell can’t be held responsible for the owners’ individual behavior.

  8. I don’t like Allen or Snyder, they have ruined this franchise, Hope they get theirs one day.

  9. The league, and everyone in the league has known Bruce Allen for decades. Everyone knows his character. Whatever he did or didn’t do, whatever he knew or didn’t know while working for the Washington franchise and owner Daniel Snyder, would be weighed against his previous 30-40 years in the league. If there are any inconsistencies, they’ll likely attribute those to his boss. The league isn’t stupid. By the way, Roger Goodell has the same boss.

  10. Given his former employer’s propensity to litigate, chances are that Snyder and the WFT will make third-party claims or cross-claims directly against Allen, blaming as much of the misbehavior as possible on Allen, and pushing as much responsibility away from Snyder.

    ———————————————

    No way Snyder would want to risk things coming out in discovery. If they want to keep the results of this investigation a secret then litigation would be an awful idea.

  11. juddgr says:
    July 3, 2021 at 1:58 pm
    I don’t like Allen or Snyder, they have ruined this franchise, Hope they get theirs one day.

    ________________________________________________

    I’m not a fan of either of these men either, but I wouldn’t use the word “they” in that statement. Allen was brought on board because his father was a very popular coach in Washington, and Bruce had a recognizable name around the league and in the media. Bruce Allen was never a football guy, so he had zero impact. He was basically hired as a fall guy. Please don’t fall for that trick.

  12. On general principle if something benefits Bruce Allen I’m opposed to it.

  13. Let’s see…Washington (used to be racial slur) Team. Founded by a racist, last team to integrate. Run for a long time by George Allen, acorn did not fall far from the tree concerning his son. Allowed to be purchased by a (very rich) Total Idiot. Bad stuff happens for decades. I have disliked the team since the ’50s. Is karma finally catching up?

  14. I wonder if anyone in that room recorded audio of that report being given? If so, I know we have a few actual attorneys who comment on here. Would an audio recording of that report be strong enough to act as evidence in lieu of any written report actually being made? And secondly did she deliver the whole thing without notes? And if those were generated are those admissible items that could be subpoenaed in a legal matter?

  15. Let’s see…Washington (used to be racial slur) Team. Founded by a racially biased owner, last team to integrate. Run for a long time by George Allen, acorn did not fall far from the tree concerning his son. Allowed to be purchased by a (very rich) misanthrope. Bad stuff happens for decades. I have disliked the team since the ’50s. Is karma finally catching up?

  16. Is this really a surprise? They sure didn’t keep Allen around for his football acumen. People have been wondering for years how Allen kept his job. Now we know.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.