PALM BEACH, Fla.—The annual league meeting officially began Monday morning amid the furor over the sport’s bounty scandal and the salary cap reductions imposed by the NFL on the Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys.
Redskins owner Daniel Snyder and General Manager Bruce Allen declined to comment on the salary cap case as they left Monday morning’s meeting. The Redskins and Cowboys have challenged the salary cap reductions in an appeal to Stephen Burbank, the University of Pennsylvania law professor who is pro football’s system arbitrator.
Burbank had not yet given the parties a hearing date, two people with knowledge of the matter said Monday morning.
The league cut $36 million in salary cap space over two years from the Redskins and $10 million over two years from the Cowboys. The NFL said the two teams structured player contracts during 2010, when the league had no salary cap, to gain an unfair competitive advantage in subsequent years, when the salary cap returned, people familiar with the case have said. Both teams have denied wrongdoing.
A New Orleans Saints spokesman said the team’s general manager, Mickey Loomis, was in attendance at the league meetings Monday and that Coach Sean Payton was on his way.
Payton was suspended for an entire season and Loomis was suspended for a half-season by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell last week for their role in the team’s bounty scheme. Defensive players received cash payments for hits that injured opponents or took them off the field.
Payton may address reporters during the three-day meeting but the Saints spokesman said that was not expected to happen Monday.
Goodell is scheduled to participate in a news conference Monday.