In the letter, the NFL accused Jones of "conduct detrimental to the league's best interests" for his aggressive behavior towards Roger Goodell, his attempt to block Goodell's contract extension from being worked out and if they proceeded down the extension path.
The letter was sent to Jones' attorney, David Boies, who Jones hired recently to try and ratchet up the tension on the NFL.
It also served to accuse Jones of leaking out details of contract requests from Goodell that he "personally knows to be an outdated, historical artifact of no relevance whatsoever in the context of these lengthy negotiations." One would have to presume these details revolve around an ESPN report that Goodell wanted $49.9 million per year and lifetime use of a private jet.
Goodell's contract was; Jones even signed off on the deal. But then -- Elliott dropped his appeal on Wednesday night, coincidentally, and will serve out the suspension. He's eligible to return Dec. 24.
Jonesand it would be naive to believe Goodell's discipline of his star player and Jones' heel turn on the contract talks are not related.
Things got weird when Jones, who is not actually on the NFL's compensation committee, reportedly hijacked a conference call and explained why Goodell was making too much money.
Needless to say, some of the billionaire owners did not like it when another billionaire threw a tantrum and decided to kick all the sand out of the sandbox (metaphorically, we think). The owners were also less than thrilled about the fact that Jones, they reportedly believe, whispered in the ear of Papa John's CEO John Schnatter, who would complain that.
Asked about the issue, Jones -- who owns more than 120 Papa John's franchises --
The lengthy, awkward and public process is. Reports of owners looking at a "nuclear" option for the situation -- -- have surfaced, , calling them "ridiculous."
"I speak to a lot of owners, a lot of owners, and I know them to be really supportive of the idea of being able to, on their part, see what and guide and give input to the committee, in particular the chairman, and I have well over half this league that is very interested, not only being a part of what is negotiated, but having it come back to them for approval," Jones said.
Jones alsofrom the NFL, .
Here's the bottom line: there is way too much reported communication between the NFL and Jones for some of it not to be true. We know Jones is annoyed at Goodell and wants to sabotage his contract and we know the other owners are annoyed at Jones, who has continued to pull the NFL back into the public eye on more than one topic, including the national anthem, player protests and Goodell's contract. It's been an ugly year for the NFL and Jones is not helping to make things go away.
Don't expect this to simmer either. The Cowboys just lost an ugly game against the Falcons without Elliott in the lineup. They host the Eagles on Sunday night and NBC might very well fire up a separate "Jerry Cam" that locks in on the owner's suite. (Pay-per-view it for $9.99, who says no?) If the Cowboys keep losing, Jones will probably put the blame squarely on Goodell.
The NFL clearly does not intend to kowtow to Jones.
And we might get closer to a real standoff between a lot of very powerful people that will become very public. Get your popcorn ready.