Travesty of Fairness
Washington Redskins General Manager Bruce Allen spoke to the media on Monday. Allen’s conversation centered completely towards the salary cap penalty and free agency. Here is his statement (via John Keim who transcribed it).
“The reason I wanted to talk a little bit today is that there’s been a lot of speculation about the course of action the Redskins have considered or not considered in regards to the NFL and NFLPA’s decision to remove $36 million of our cap room and give it to a hand-picked number of teams.
“I must say there’s been some wild speculation that’s been bantered around in the media about what might happen. I’ve enjoyed reading some of it. But we’ve never contemplated some of the creative ideas that I’ve been reading.
“Let me discuss some of the facts that we’ve learned over the last year in what I call a travesty of fairness. One year ago at this time, we learned from player agents and the media that the NFL and the NFLPA had reached an agreement to take 36 million dollars of our cap room. Contrary to some of the public comments that I’ve seen from the chairman of the NFL’s CEC committee, according to commissioner Goodell or NFL lawyers we did not violate any NFL rule in 2010 or 2011 or any regulation. Also contrary to the rumors and off the record conversations that NFL people have had with various people in the media, the Redskins were never told or warned that the NFL and the NFLPA would reach an agreement two years later to punish us. Let me be crystal clear on this point. There is no trial. There is no hearing. There are no backroom discussions involving the Washington Redskins.
“Despite the fact that the NFL and the NFLPA supposedly represent all the clubs and all the players in the league we don’t feel we were fairly represented in this case. As we stated before and has been confirmed by the NFL, every contract we submitted to the NFL and the NFLPA during the  season was reviewed an approved by both the commissioner’s office and the NFL Players Association. Unfortunately, we’ve heard four different stories on how the number 36 million was reached at by the NFL and the NFLPA. Therefore we do not have an answer yet on what the truth is as to how they reached that number.
“The NFL and NFLPA have used phrases of competitive balance or competitive advantage over the years. So let’s go back a year ago at this time when the decision was made to do this and let me explain what competitive balance was in the NFL at this time. We were just coming off our fourth consecutive season of a fourth-place finish in the NFC East. The New York Giants were Super Bowl reigning champions. According to documents supplied by the NFL lawyers to an arbitrator, the Redskins were 18th in the league in salary cap room for the 2012 season, and we had just announced we made a trade with the St. Louis Rams for the No. 2 choice overall. Ironically today some teams have over 100 million of salary cap room than we do over the next three seasons, but I don’t hear anyone talking about competitive balance or that being a competitive advantage. Although the NFL and NFLPA agreement was made to slow our progress somehow, I’m very proud of our team and our organization in what we were able to accomplish in a winning fashion. I want to assure you our coaches and players are doing everything they can to improve on last year’s performance.
“In the same manner as last year, we are not going to allow this to be a distraction to our team for the upcoming season. We’re excited about the upcoming free agency that starts tomorrow and looking forward to next month’s draft.”