Host Jerry Jones hopes ‘very positive reception’ greets Roger Goodell at draft
Roger Goodell over the past few years has been frequently subjected to boos and heckling when presiding over the NFL Draft. And with the draft being held this year at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, starting Thursday, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones hopes a “very positive reception” instead greets the NFL commissioner.
“I think our crowd is a … football crowd,”‘ Jones said Tuesday at his annual pre-draft news conference, via SportsDay. “There’s a football view and there’s a Cowboy view, so that I’m not so sure you’ll see a lot of … personal preferences or personal opinions about the Commissioner.
“I would hope — because I appreciate having this draft here in Dallas, this is a neat deal, I think it’s very fitting that we got it — and so I hope we give him a very positive reception.”
Jones’ comments of course come in the wake of a season-long feud between himself and Goodell last year. The Cowboys owner at first was unhappy with the NFL commissioner over the handling of the Ezekiel Elliott suspension saga, a protracted legal battle that ultimately resulted in the running back sitting out six games.
Jones also seemed to be the lone holdout among NFL owners over Goodell’s contract extension. Ultimately, Goodell received his very lucrative extension. But the fallout from Jones’ aggressive stance resulted in the league assessing him an approximately $2 million penalty as reimbursement to his fellow owners for legal fees incurred over the battle.
Jones last month said he had no regrets over having to “pay the fiddler” due to his standoffs with Goodell. That said, Jones is putting on all appearances of goodwill toward Goodell ahead of Dallas’ coming days in the NFL spotlight.
“I don’t know of anybody maybe other than me that’s had more boos than Roger has,” Jones said. “I know about how that works. I do hope we can be positive in our reception. We are going to do something pretty special and he did have a final say in that.”