Snyder alleges in court records that Schar intended, in retaliation, to leak negative information about Snyder’s personal life and the way the team worked to the news media in hopes that it would be harmful enough to force him to sell. Selling the entire team – not just Snyder’s stake, but Schar, Smith and Rothman’s stakes as well – would add significantly to the value of the non-voting shares the three minority partners have tried to sell since spring.
A Schar attorney did not respond to a request for comment.
The team, 6-7 but on their way to a playoff spot, played better this season under a new coach. It’s at the top of its chaotic division with three regular season games.
However, Snyder has been haunted by controversy, including allegations by cheerleaders that they were sexually harassed and intimidated by well-heeled supporters and team employees, as well as allegations of widespread sexual harassment in the team’s front office, which the league is still investigating.
However, according to people knowledgeable of the negotiations, the NFL owners believe Schar has crossed a line to publicly slander Snyder. Even so, knocking out an owner or part owner is seen as a rare last resort, and that’s why they’re pushing for an agreement in which Snyder would buy up the partners.
According to the plan being worked out by the partners ‘representatives, Schars’ proceeds would be cut by millions of dollars as punishment for attempting to publicly undermine Snyder, according to three people aware of the possible penalties. Even then, he’ll walk away with hundreds of millions of dollars.
“The most important thing for the league is its image,” said Upton Bell, a longtime team leader and son of former NFL commissioner Bert Bell, about property disputes in general. “They want it to look like Disney World when it isn’t. It’s business, it’s not a moral universe. “
The fight is essentially about money.
Limited partners were disappointed in May when Snyder stopped paying annual dividends to Schar, Rothman, Smith and other limited partners during the height of the coronavirus pandemic that threatened the upcoming NFL season. He didn’t explain the decision, but it was consistent with similar steps taken by other owners.