It’s a strong presentation of facts and law. But, as the league seems to do from time to time, it brief goes one step too far, at page 13: “There were no rules or agreements broken by the Redskins, the Cowboys, or any other Club with respect to Player Contracts executed in the 2010 League Year.”
That assertion is backed by a sworn affidavit from Peter Ruocco, senior V.P. of labor relations for the NFL Management Council, who says at paragraph 12 that “[n]o rules or agreements were broken” by the Redskins or Cowboys, even though total salary cap penalties of $46 million were imposed against the two teams. At paragraph 3 of the affidavit, Ruocco denies that he told NFLPA general counsel Tom DePaso in March 2012 “that the League believed that the Redskins and Cowboys had secured an unfair advantage over Clubs that committed lesser amounts to players in 2010 than did those Clubs.”
Ruocco may not have said it privately to DePaso in March 2012, but Giants co-owner John Mara said it publicly that same month.
“I thought the penalties imposed were proper,” Mara said. “What they did was in violation of the spirit of the salary cap. They attempted to take advantage of a one-year loophole, and quite frankly, I think they’re lucky they didn’t lose draft picks. . . . They attempted to take advantage of it knowing full well there would be consequences.”