Saturday, March 12, 2011
Roger Goodell's $1 salary under way
ESPN.com news services
NEW YORK -- NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and league general counsel Jeff Pash are slashing their salaries to $1 each during the lockout.
Goodell and Pash promised in January they would take salary cuts if there was a work stoppage. Goodell earns about $10 million a year, including bonuses, and Pash nearly $5 million.
Goodell also has asked the league's compensation committee to delay any bonus payments to him until there is a deal with the players' union.
Also taking cuts will be all league personnel at the New York headquarters, NFL Films in Mount Laurel, N.J., and at NFL Network and NFL.com in Culver City, Calif.
For now, salaries for those league employees will be reduced by 12 percent, an amount equal to two weeks' pay.
If the work stoppage continues into August, salary reductions for management-level employees will range from 25 percent for executive vice presidents to 20 percent for senior VPs and 15 percent for VPs. Directors will take a 10 percent cut and managers will be reduced by 5 percent.
In 2009, Goodell took a 20 percent pay cut and the league staff was trimmed by 15 percent.
Several teams have instituted furloughs and pay cuts because of the lockout, which began Saturday morning after the players' union decertified and the owners locked them out.
The Kansas City Chiefs have a plan to reduce salaries by less than 10 percent during a prolonged labor stoppage while letting all personnel keep their jobs. Those making the most money, including general manager Scott Pioli and coach Todd Haley, are taking the biggest hit, but no employees will be laid off or furloughed. If there is a full 2011 season, employees would be reimbursed for money lost.
For the New York Jets, the lockout means 25 percent pay cuts for Rex Ryan and his coaching staff, along with general manager Mike Tannenbaum. The anticipated pay cut -- members of the organization learned of it several months ago -- is now in effect with the lockout, a team spokesman said. Non-contract employees are now required to take one furlough week -- unpaid -- per month.
"This is a fluid situation," the spokesman said. "We will obviously be evaluating our approach as events unfold."
The employees' lost wages will be recouped if no games are lost, according to the team. The 25 percent cut is within the guidelines of the lockout clause in each coach's contract, but Larry Kennan, the president of the NFL Coaches' Association, told ESPNNewYork.com last week that 25 percent was "very harsh." Other teams, such as the New York Giants, are planning no pay cuts or furloughs, only hiring freezes.
The Green Bay Packers haven't initiated pay cuts yet, but vice president of administration/general counsel Jason Wied said cuts are likely in the future.
"Our coaches, our scouts, even [Packers CEO] Mark Murphy and [general manager] Ted Thompson and [head coach] Mike McCarthy, we're looking at relatively sizable salary reductions until this matter is resolved," Wied said in a conference call with reporters Saturday.
The team is also freezing salaries and new hiring.
However, Green Bay does plan to go forward with a new scoreboard project and expects to keep the Lambeau Field Atrium attractions open to fans.
"This is not a time for us to pull back in terms of reaching out to the fans," Wied said.
They took the term "lockout" rather literally at the Tennessee Titans' headquarters in Nashville, where a metal chain secured the main gate to the parking lot's front entrance, an extra bit of security normally not seen there.
In preparation for an antitrust lawsuit filed by 10 NFL players, the NFL made two additions to its legal team -- David Boies, who represented Al Gore during the recount fight in the disputed 2000 presidential election, and former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement.
The lawsuit includes star quarterbacks Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees. It was filed Friday in federal court in Minnesota, where a judge has held jurisdiction over NFL labor matters since the early 1990s.
The lockout is the sport's first work stoppage since 1987.
Information from ESPNNewYork.com's Rich Cimini and The Associated Press contributed to this report.