Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones escalates fight over Roger Goodell’s new contract

Dallas Cowboys Jerry Jones (right) laughed off a threat from some NFL owners possible attempt to remove him as controlling owner of the Cowboys. Jones is trying to stop the league from giving NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (left) a new contract.(Alex Brandon/AP)

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is making enemies among NFL owners as he continues to block the league’s attempt to give NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a new contract.

Jones has threatened legal action to stop the league from giving Goodell a contract extension. Jones’ threat prompted some owners from the six-owner compensation committee to reportedly issue a cease-and-desist warning to Jones. The punishment options include fines, docking draft picks, suspending Jones or the so-called “nuclear option” of forcing Jones to forfeit ownership of the Cowboys.

Jones blew off the threats from his fellow owners.

“I’ve had discussions with the committee chairman, but received no ‘notices,” Jones said Tuesday morning on radio station KRLD in Dallas. “I’ve had not one inkling of communication with the league office or any owner that would suggest something that laughable and ridiculous. If somebody is asserting that then they are not knowledgeable about how things work in the NFL.”

Goodell’s current deal expires after the 2018 season and the committee is negotiating with Goodell for a new five-year deal that would run through 2025. Goodell reportedly has asked for a salary of $49.5 million a year, the use of a private jet for life and lifetime health insurance for his family.

Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank, chairman of the committee, said negotiations are progressing.

“The committee is continuing its work towards finalizing a contract extension with the commissioner,” Blank said in a statement on Monday. “The negotiations are progressing and we will keep ownership apprised of the negotiations as they move forward. We do not intend to publicly comment on our discussions.”

Many observers say Jones is blocking the contract extension and holding it hostage in retaliation for Goodell giving Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott a six-game suspension after his ex-girlfriend accused him of domestic violence. Jones said he opposition has nothing to do with Elliott’s suspension.

“Roger has almost 18 months [left before his contract expires],” Jones said. “We’ve got all the time in the world to evaluate what we’re doing. We’ve got all the time in the world to extend him. We need to slow this train down.”

Jones and Blank avoided each other after the Falcons defeated the Cowboys in Atlanta on Sunday.

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