Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wouldn’t comment directly on the ongoing battle between NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and the New England Patriots regarding the Deflategate scandal.
And he certainly had no comment regarding Patriots owner Bob Kraft’s scathing remarks about Goodell and the league.
But Jones had no problem endorsing Goodell and the job he is doing as commissioner in light of the controversy of quarterback Tom Brady being suspended for the first four games of the season.
“I certainly shouldn’t and wouldn’t comment about another team’s issues,” Jones said. “First of all, let me really emphasize how much I endorse our commissioner. And how strongly I feel about the job he is doing. He has got obviously a very tough job. But he is doing an outstanding job. You have to deal with people you are counting on to help build and to help excel the National Football League and I’m talking about the owners. You have to know that you are going to make some decisions that are very unpopular with that particular group. This is the case.”
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Jones said he speaks from experience when talking about Goodell, who deducted $10 million from the Cowboys’ salary cap in 2012 and 2013 for violating the spirit of the rules in the uncapped year of 2010. Jones inferred that he was told by other owners in the league to take the fine in the best interest of the NFL and not fight it.
“I can speak to that because on a personal basis as well as from our franchise we have had that happen to us,” Jones said. “I’m sitting here living with the results of the commissioners’ decision still today that I didn’t agree with it when it happened. So some of the very people that give you biggest complaint they are the ones that give you a phone call and tell you, ‘hey let’s be a team player now and let’s all get in here and realize this happens to everybody. And let’s go on and compete. We have a great league and a great game.’ So I would remind any and everybody that we do (have a great league). We a commissioner that is outstanding. He has to make hard calls. And more often than not you are going to have a season or you going to have a period of time when those go against you as an owner in the NFL.”
As of now Brady will not be available for the Oct. 11 game against the Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Jones said the Patriots will be a formidable opponent with or without Brady.
“Of course, I think Tom Brady is arguably as great a quarterback as we have ever competed against since I have been in pro football,” Jones said. “And the fact he may not be there is substantive. I dont want to in any way suggest that the kinds of teams that Bill Belichick puts together up there and Bob Kraft owns can't figure out a way to beat us without Tom Brady. If anybody can do it they can do it.