Posted by Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk NBC
At the outset of a summary of last week’s collapse of negotiation sessions between the NFL and the players’ union, Jim Trotter ofSports Illustrated paints a picture of the kind of disrespect that likely helped the drive players toward the decertification-and-litigation option.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, not a bit humbler after last month’s Super Bowl seating fiasco or the prior day’s finding that the owners had abused their duty to max out revenues by cutting a deal for lockout insurance, opened a face-to-face meeting with the players on March 2 with the following message to the players who attended the session.
“I don’t think we’ve got your attention,” Jones said, according to several players who spoke anonymously to Trotter. “You clearly don’t understand what we’re saying, and we’re not hearing what you’re saying. So I guess we’re going to have to show you to get your attention.”
Per Trotter, Jones then tapped his fists together. The players interpreted the gesture as a sign that a lockout was coming. (Maybe he was simply using Friendscode for giving the finger.)
Jones then stood up and walked out. Panthers owner Jerry Richardson reportedly prepared to leave as well, but Patriots owner Robert Kraft put a hand on Richardson’s forearm, prompting Richardson to stay put.
If the report is accurate, it’s troubling. And it helps us understand why the deal couldn’t get done.
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