Roger Goodell has signed a contract extension to continue as NFL commissioner through 2024. The extension was first reported by Pro Football Talk.
Goodell’s five-year deal is worth approximately $40 million annually, 90 percent of which is incentive based, according to The Washington Post. The extension pauses, for now, a rift between the league’s commissioner and most powerful owner that had been described as “an all-out, unprecedented civil war.”
Goodell’s extension was placed in serious doubt earlier this year when Cowboys owner Jerry Jones raised concerns about Goodell’s tenure as commissioner, arguing that Goodell is overcompensated and questioning his handling of a series of issues plaguing the league, including player protests against social injustice during the national anthem and the league’s domestic violence policy. Jones, who threatened legal action, was reportedly retaliating for Goodell’s suspension of Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott, who was originally suspended by Goodell in August and began serving it in November after a lengthy legal fight. Jones had lobbied that Goodell’s new deal should be incentive-laden, which reportedly made Goodell “furious.” Jones had hoped to raise concerns over Goodell’s contract at an owners’ meeting scheduled next week in Dallas, but with the deal now finalized, Jones’s options are limited.
The NFL compensation committee, composed of six NFL owners, negotiated the deal with Goodell after being granted the power to finalize a contract in May. The committee sent a memo to the league’s other 26 owners notifying them of the deal Wednesday.
“Our committee unanimously supports the contract and believes that it is fully consistent with ‘market’ compensation and the financial and other parameters outlined to the owners at the May 2017 meeting, as well as in the best interests of ownership,” the memo stated.
The deal may be worth less than Goodell initially requested. Over the summer, he reportedly proposed a compensation package of $49.5 million annually, lifetime use of a private jet, and lifetime health insurance for him and his family. Goodell has already earned more than $200 million since becoming commissioner in 2006.
The league has seen staggering growth under Goodell. With league revenues at $8.5 billion in 2010, Goodell announced a plan to nearly triple its revenue to $25 billion by 2027. The league is already more than halfway there, pulling in an estimated $14 billion in revenue in 2017.
A key piece of the league’s growth has been the 2011 collective bargaining agreement, which Goodell was instrumental in negotiating and which has been considered favorable to owners. His extension ensures that he will negotiate the next CBA, as the current one will expire after the 2020 season.