"Case has gone in a direction it shouldn’t have” - Judge explains struggles against Jerry Jones in NFL Sunday Ticket lawsuit

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Washington Commanders
NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Washington Commanders

Jerry Jones and several high-profile NFL executives are involved in the Sunday Ticket lawsuit. On Tuesday, as the hearing in this case continued in California District Court, presiding Judge Philip Gutierrez admonished the party involved.

This class action lawsuit has been in the courts since 2015. It involves 2.4 million individual subscribers and 48,000 businesses. They allege that the NFL’s practice of selling out-of-market games as a package has been detrimental to them and violates the U.S. Anti-Trust laws. Experts believe their compensation could balloon to $21 billion if they win.

However, one Tuesday, as Jerry Jones got ready to take the stand, continuing his testimony from the previous day, Judge Gutierrez reprimanded the plaintiff’s lawyers.

“The way you have tried this case is far from simple. This case has turned into 25 hours of depositions and gobbledygook,” the judge said.
“This case has gone in a direction it shouldn’t have gone. I don’t know what you are doing, but marketing is not media. I’m struggling with the plaintiffs’ case.”

The NFL, including Jerry Jones in his capacity as a member of the NFL’s media committee, has maintained its stance for years. They have the right to sell the NFL Sunday Ticket games as a package. This is due to the antitrust exemption given to them by The Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961.

What did Jerry Jones say in the NFL Sunday Ticket lawsuit?

During his testimony on Monday, the Dallas Cowboys owner took a shot at the Cincinnati Bengals. It was to prove that some teams would make more money than others if they did not sell the entire package. He still believes that the practice of package deals helps out the whole league.

“I am convinced I would make a lot more money than the Bengals. I’m completely against each team doing TV deals. It is flawed,” Jerry Jones said.

On Tuesday, while being cross-examined by the plaintiff’s lawyer, Jones maintained his stance on teams being able to sell their out-of-market television rights.

“No. It would undermine the free TV model we have now,” he said.

This case is scheduled to have other witnesses and testimonies throughout the week. However, one NFL analyst believes that irrespective of the outcome of this case, the NFL viewers are bound to benefit from it.

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Edited by Abhimanyu Gupta
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