Originally posted on Speculative Sports  |  Last updated 3/24/12

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones disagrees with the NFL’s decision to levy a $10 million cap fine to his team. Now it appears he will seek legal recourse over the matter.

The fines (Washington also received a $36 million fine) mean the team must stay beneath the salary cap by that amount, though the penalty can be spread out over two seasons. They were issued because the teams tried to gain a “competitive advantage” by spending more than other teams in an uncapped season.

How much advantage did two teams who failed to acquire winning seasons (13-19 between them) get? How can they violate a cap that is not there? How is Washington supposed to field a competitive team spending 14 percent less than their opponents?

These were some of the issues Jones addressed: “…all of our contracts were approved by the league, and you can’t approve a contract that is in violation of league rules. You can’t even get it on the books if it isn’t in sync with league rules.” He also noted that he has reached out to Washington owner Daniel Snyder to work together to fight the decision, noting the oddity of teaming up with a rival.

For the NFL’s part, there were discussions over the spirit of the rules governing the uncapped season. They could not put them in writing because that would have required a new collective bargaining agreement. But that is the fault of league lawyers in outlining the language and owners for deciding to go to a lockout with an uncapped year over renegotiating a new one.

In all likelihood, a more reasonable penalty will be settled on. Giving Dallas a $5 million cap restriction spread out over two years will not seriously impact them. Washington is rebuilding, and could take a $9 million hit all at once.

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