“NFL-Next Man Up–Next Owner Forced Out”
The National Football League has sat on the sidelines during this war of words over the Washington Redskins nickname.
That will be changed shortly.
The NFL may not be able to sit on the sidelines now, this latest issue involving the franchise owned by Daniel Snyder, cast as one of the worst owners in the NFL.
Money and power corrupt, and that probably explains who this man is, and why he acts the way he does.
And it likely explains why he did nothing about the story that spilled across the country thanks to the Washington Post’s investigative sports reporting team.
A searing report that covered 13-years of sexual abuse, harassment, and methods of operations by people who were part of Snyder’s inner circle in running the NFL team.
15-women, including 2-reporters, came front and center and detailed derogatory treatment by upper level management, most of them Vice President’s on the Redskins staff, working for Snyder.
It won’t be ‘he said–she said’. No, there are text messages, Emails, taped phone calls.
Allegations against a number of VPs, since fired recently, as the story was about to break. Information about coaching staff members too.
Sexual touching, verbal abuse, references to sex acts, intimidation, and harassment.
Once upon a time it might have been a way of corporate life, but not in this ‘Me-Too’ era of society.
It happened in VPs offices; in lunch rooms; in meeting rooms. It happened in team hotels; bars; skyboxes at the Redskins Stadium; and even at the NFL combine.
It went unchecked when presented to whatever resembled a Human Resource office at Redskins Park.
It went without discipline from the owner of the team, purchased for 800M-now-worth over 2B in the Nation’s Capital.
Redskins football has never been the same since Snyder purchased the team from Jack Kent Cooke in 1999, the team that reached glory with a Christian leader in Joe Gibbs.
In 20-years time, just five winning seasons. They’ve won the NFC-East just twice in his tenure. There is just 1-playoff win in the Snyder era.
A franchise that used to play before 92,000 fans a game at Fed Ex Field, now draws 62,000. A team that used to have a waiting list of season ticket holders, has to sell discounted tickets on websites.
They’ve gone thru 4-team Presidents, a host of GMs, and a ton of coaches.
Everyone of them has ended badly under the Snyder reign of error.
None ever left on good terms, nor with a winning record. Some should have never been hired, others wished they had never been.
Norv Turner finished (8-8). Marty Schottenheimer was dumped after (8-8). Steve Spurrier came from college and left at (5-11). Jim Zorn was a disaster at (4-12). Mike Shanahan was removed at (3-13). So was the last hiring failure Jay Gruden.
Snyder’s business practices stagger the imagination.
He sued season ticket holders who failed to make PSL payments in the Recession. He charged fans to attend preseason practices. He sold commemorative hats after the 9/11 tragedies. He was hit with a 36M dollar penalty for abuse of the NFL salary cap.
You name it, he did it. And now this, what he allowed to happen from 2003-thru-2019.
Some people earned their wealth and Snyder did in Maryland as an advertising entrepreneur.
Some people inherited what was given them, like the Bengals’ Mike Brown taking over the franchise from Hall of Fame father Paul Brown.
Some are born on 3rd base, wake up and think they hit a triple, like the Chargers’ Dean Spanos.
Some have it fall into their lap like Mark Davis, inheriting a once proud but failing Raiders franchise.
But this story is scandalous because it happened in his front office, executed by his trusted advisors, and went unchecked till it hit the news cycle of the Washington Post.
If you don’t learn from history, you likely repeat it.
Dan Snyder need only to look down the road at Jerry Sullivan, founder and builder of the Carolina Panthers. From expansion team to Super Bowl. Founded a franchise. Built a stadium. Made the tri-state proud. He’s gone from the NFL, removed just two years ago after female execs turned on him for his sexist ways of doing business for years.
The NFL forced a sale of the franchise in the middle of the night. The statue to Sullivan was taken down a year ago.
Oddly, the Redskins, in the middle of the nickname upheaval, took down the statue to former racist owner George Preston Marshall weeks ago, and removed his name from the Ring of Honor and Hall of Fame.
And Snyder thought he was dealing with tough times just weeks ago.
So the sun comes up at the team headquarters in Ashburn, Virginia on a Friday morning. New day for sure. A different life about to begin for Daniel Snyder too.
The NFL cannot sit by and not take action. They should, and they will.
And it won’t matter what the new name of the team is, for Snyder probably won’t be their owner going forward.
Power and money corrupt. It looks like it did in Washington.