The NFL has put up with a lot from Daniel Snyder. Allegations of rampant sexual harassment inside a toxic work environment. A bumbling cover-up. Congressional attention. A stadium that is literally falling apart. Very bad football teams.
But now that he’s accused of touching the money? That may be a bridge too far.
The Washington Commanders may have withheld ticket revenue they were supposed to share with the other 31 franchises, according to a Front Office Sports report that dropped on Saturday night. The allegation reportedly stems from the House Oversight Committee’s inquiries into Snyder’s dumpster fire of a franchise.
The allegations would be a “death knell” if proven true, according to Florio. King called them a potential “poison pill.”
The basics of what Washington may have pulled off, via FOS:
According to NFL bylaws, all teams are required to pass along 40% of ticket sales from each home game — minus ticket handling charges and taxes — to the league, which then disperses the funds to visiting teams. At least one person gave information in recent weeks to Congressional investigators that alleges the Commanders didn’t pass along the full 40%, two sources with knowledge of the investigation told FOS.
There is already some partisan bickering about the merits of the investigation and the value of the information, so who knows where this all goes. But the only thing that matters in the NFL is money, and this is a significant revenue stream that impacts things like the salary cap. Snyder’s organization skimming off the top is unlikely to be tolerated if proven true. At the very least, a lot of lawyers figure to rake in a windfall of billable hours.
If Snyder is forced to sell, it wouldn’t shock if the Commanders fetch the biggest price for a team in sports history. It’s an iconic franchise in a major market, the nickname has already been dealt with, you’re going to get a new building soon and for all the off-field turmoil, Washington has been surprisingly competitive for years now and has a coach (Ron Rivera) who can win.