Jerry Richardson shocked the football world on Sunday when he announced his plans to sell the Carolina Panthers after the 2017 season ends.
Richardson – who is 81 – has been accused of workplace misconduct and sexual harassment. The NFL said it would investigate the accusations made against Richardson, however it’s unclear whether the probe will continue now that the Panthers’ founder plans to step down.
Jerry Richardson will put Carolina Panthers up for sale https://t.co/jvPW3GRAAi
— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) December 18, 2017
“There has been no greater mission or purpose in my life than to have brought an NFL franchise to Charlotte,” Richardson wrote in a letter on Sunday. “I believe that it is time to turn the franchise over to new ownership. Therefore, I will put the team up for sale at the conclusion of this NFL season. We will not begin the sale process, nor will we entertain any inquiries, until the very last game is played…While I will no longer be the team owner, I will always be the Panthers Number One Fan.”
While some franchise employees may be glad to see Richardson go, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones isn’t ready to say goodbye to his friend and colleague.
“I’m very sad. Jerry is one of the really, really, really outstanding men of football that I’ve ever met, and I really admire him. I know that he made it the old-fashioned way. He worked for it. He took what he made in a short time in pro football and turned it into a great business and then used that to get the Carolina franchise. So he’s a great story,” Jones said. “I’m really sad. I want all of those kind of men we can have in the National Football League.”
This isn’t the first time Jerry Jones has inserted himself into public matters in the NFL and it probably won’t be the last. I doubt Jerry Jones is actually a harassment sympathizer but these comments could get him into some pretty hot water, given the recent volatility regarding workplace misconduct. Just last week, former NFL-ers and ESPN commentators Donavan McNabb and Eric Davis were suspended for sexual harassment allegations.