"If not for Jerry ... this deal would be done."
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has reportedly delayed contract negotiations aimed at an extension for NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. According to ESPN, Jones is the sole reason Goodell does not have a contract extension. His current deal is set to expire in 2019.
"If not for Jerry," one person familiar with the contract negotiations said this weekend, "this deal would be done."
Jones has reportedly interjected himself as the unofficial seventh member of the league's six-man compensation committee which consists of consists of chairman Arthur Blank (Falcons), Clark Hunt (Chiefs), Robert Kraft (Patriots), John Mara (Giants), Bob McNair (Texans) and Art Rooney II (Steelers).
ESPN reports that those familiar with the contract negotiations say Jones has "argued persistently for months to the committee that other owners believe Goodell makes "way too much money" and demands a pay cut and a radical change in the formula that compensates the commissioner."
After the Cowboys' loss to the Denver Broncos last night, Jones issued a statement regarding his involvement in Goodell's contract negotiations.
"All of that is without any substance at all," Jones said of the charge that he has delayed negotiations. "The exercise of looking and extending our commissioner's contract is one that we keep really in tight. So there certainly are exaggerations there; that's not the way that works. I've always supported Roger, and let's just leave it at that. I wouldn't dare get into nuances and wouldn't deny anything that is written whether it is true or not."
The NFL's compensation committee is scheduled for a conference call on Wednesday, which is expected to produce a specific term proposal for Goodell's contract extension, according to ESPN, and Jerry Jones will be included on the call.