The League


Which NFL Team Owner Hurts His Team Most?

Al Davis, Jerry Jones and Daniel Snyder are known for their hands on approach to ownership, but are they doing more harm than good?

Posted by Emil Steiner on September 12, 2008 11:03 AM

Blak Mamba: Snyder's hands down the worst owner. He seeks yes men for coaches and fires anybody who has an iota of independent thought. Way too many old...

Justin: William Clay Ford - Lions He hired Matt Millen and will not fire him, enough said....

D. M. Rivera: Regarding Modell and the article concerning how he hurts the Ravins...At least he pulled his team out during the daytime....

Make a Comment  |  All Comments (50)

Anonymous :

Jerry Jones' teams win. Al Davis will be dead soon. We are STUCK with Dan Snyder. He has destroyed the team and there is no end in sight.

Vinny Cerrato :

Dan Snyder! He's good at racquetball and charging $8 per beer at Fed Ex. What more could you ask for?!

Ted Turner :

The worst owner of all time has to be Robert Irsay, the soulless, spineless, gutless sell-out who stole The Colts from Baltimore in the middle of the night and moved them to Indianapolis. Baltimore loved the Colts and Memorial stadium was one of the greatest sporting venues ever built. His move signified the end of football being a game for the fans. It became a business all about the bottom line.
He represents all that is bad and evil in profession sports.

corky664 :

Snyder is the worst owner in the league now. Forget Davis, he has done his time, now Snyder has taken his spot in history. The redskins are the second most valuable franchise in the league, yet they won't even make the playoffs this year. That is the owners fault for not getting the right front office personnel. He needs to stop putting his two cents in and hire a real GM and Team President!! The fans deserve more than what they pay for week in and week out.

KJ :

Daniel Snyder, a owner with a ego to large to ever hire a competent GM. Remember Gibbs era one was sucessful because of Bobby Beathard and his knowledge for talent. We have continued bad drafts and free agent signings since Snyder's inception. Pete Carroll, Bill Cowher, no one coach can fix this mess without a decent GM and Snyder staying out of football related decisions. Never was a team more demolished of what it did well in just one year than this years team. Jason Campbell will never run this offense and it will be start all over again next year.

Easy :

Clearly it is Dan Snyder. He thinks too much. Rather then hire a front office and coach and try and keep them together, he tries to win now. I give him credit for having passion . . .

Strangely the reason he doesn't know how to win is because he doesn't treat the team on the field the way he treats the business in the stands . . .that is to say he needs to start treating football operations as a business and not like a fan. Like i said passion is there, the acumen is not!

PS7900 :

Al Davis. That team is totally dysfunctional. The Head Coach is trying to get fired; The Defensive Coach is the Owner's guy. The two coaches rip each other in the media. The Owner cusses out players at practice. It's incredible.

I know there's a lot of people that want to run Snyder out of town. He's made enough mistakes for a dozen people. But, there's no question that he tries. The vile, venom, and outright hatred directed his way is a bit overdone.

DT :

What garbage is this? Jerry Jones was a fool until Jimmy Johnson started to win for him. Now all these clowns call him a genious. Last time I looked the cowgirls don't have a gm either! This is a Redskins town and Daniel Snyder is the owner. Root for somebody else if you don't like it!!

mriley0223 :

DT Wrote:

Last time I looked the cowgirls don't have a gm either! This is a Redskins town and Daniel Snyder is the owner. Root for somebody else if you don't like it!!

I agree. The fans need to spend their money with the team they root for. He bought the team. It doesn't belong to people of Washington, DC. The market forces will fix the issues when cash and income become an issue for the team. Right now they are not in question.

Anonymous :

Dan Snyder is the worst owner in the league. In fact, he's the Peter Angelos of the NFL. And yes I'm a Redskins fan.

Ajay Gupta :

It has to be Danny Boy, because at least the other two have rings - you can't take that away. And you can't say Jerry Jones is hurting the Cowboys now because they are in contention & are the most valuable franchise in the NFL, if not in all of sports.

Now Al Davis gives Synder a run for his money because his Superbowls were a while ago and they appear to be an even worse team now than the Skins. Still, Al Davis is in the Hall of Fame and I sincerely doubt Danny will get there.

Noble Man Loved By Many Animals :

Daniel synder is a goon. At least Jones and Davis care about how the team does. Snyder just wants to make money.

charlie :

A bit of bias, I see.

The 49er's, Detroit and now St. Louis don't seem to be going anywhere.

I'd rather be a Skins fan than a Lions fan, that's for sure.

Easy V :

By Far Dan Snyder. Every single year he has done something to mess up the continuity of the team. What seperates him even more, is that he has NO football background, but seems to think he should have a say in personell matters. Jerry Jones actually has a football background. I've been a fan of the Skins since I was 3, and this Snyder has turned the team into something I can't even recognize anymore. I hate Snyder with a passion for all the moves he's made. I don't care if your heart is in the right place, if you can't recognize that your only credential is that you were a hardcore fan, than you should hire a coach and a GM, and stay the hell out. Write the checks and get out of the way.

Anonymous :

It's Li'l Danny for sure. Once it became known that he and his faithful sidekick Vinnie would be running the team and no pro GM would be involved, then no good coach would consider coming to the Skins. Who did that leave? Jim Zorn. Zorn is wed to the Prissy Little West Coast Offense that his QB can't run and that the elements in NY/PA/DC won't let work in December anyway. He couldn't even bother to put any hurryup offense in for the opening game of the season. SELLLLL Danny! SELLLLL!

Is this a serious poll? :

You have got to be kidding, right? Why bother listing anybody other than Little Danny Snyder and his groveling boot licking glory hole, VInny Cerrato?

Stro :

Danny Boy Snyder is the worst owner in the history of professional sports. When I read that he actually is involved in approving game plans on a weekly basis, that sealed it. He never even played a down of football at any level. He knows nothing about football talent, and is a very overrated businessman as well. The Redskins will never be good unless he gives up control of football related matters.

Cream :

I agree - a lot of bias. You people need to look beyond your narrow life and realize that the redskins have had lots of good years (ok, different owner). But try to be a Lions fan - same owner, will continue to be in the same family for the foreseeable future. At least this year the fans are finally revolting against a mediocre team with an expensive ticket price.

AL Zeke etc :

The Bidwells, Yorks and Al Davis scrape the bottom. Luckily for us Skins fans, Dan Snyder isn't in their league, yet.

noone.from.tampa :

By far the worst owner (modern era) had to be Hugh Culverhouse. He had to die before the team could get better. Good for the Redskins because we got Doug Williams because of his cheapness. Worst current owner is Al Davis. He wants to be owner, GM and coach. He still has not gotten over Pete Rozelle being picked to head the merged league. Dan is not a stupid businessman and knows how to maximize revenues. He has tried to whatever it takes to win a championship. He just to find a good GM and coach and let them run the football operations. Hopefully the Vinny/Zorn combo will work. Time will tell.

P.S. "Hope is not a strategy"

BiffGriff :

There's no question that Danny Boy Snyder is the worst owner, hands down. Second runner up would be the Brown family. I guess they got lucky with Forrest Gregg and Sam Wyche.

Chef Diva :

You have it all wrong. The worst owner is the one, or collectively, the ones who abandoned the Los Angeles football fans. What is it, 12 years now, and still no franchise or even a hope of a team coming to L.A. Ask anyone at a local sports bar, "Hey you, who is your team?" You will get dozens of answers. Sadly, you get Raider fans with scarred broken hearts, hoping they'll come back some day. For me, I chose a team far across the country, the Panthers. But all we get on local TV is the Raiders and their sorry performance. Hmm, is that a big heaping dish of comeuppance being served? Yet, nothing is done to bring back the NFL to the City of Angels. Nada. Go Panthers!

Gene in Dallas :

Having suffered thru years of the Houston Oilers before they took the quarter of a billion bribe to move to Nashville, I'd have to say Bud Adams(known in Houston as Bottom Line Bud) is definitely one of the bottom feeders. But the Bidwells have gotta be mentioned because they haven't played in an NFL Championship game since the Normandy Invasion(the one in 1944, not the one in 1066), and have always appeared to be in self-destruct mode! Great players like Larry Wilson occasionally appear on their roster(even a blind hog finds an acorn once in awhile!), but their record of mediocrity is second to none. And Al Davis has appeared to lose his marbles recently, after having been one of the best owners in earlier years! I don't know where Art Modell is these days, but that sleazy move of the Browns/Ravens puts him in my hall of shame, for that and for having the idea that Paul Brown needed to be fired... And who was it that got Walter O'Malley into Baseball's HOF this year? I didn't realize they'd opened a wing for sleazy weasels!

Anonymous :

noone.from.tampa is right. Huge Culverbucks was THE worst owner of all times. But the current champ is his successor, Malcolm Glazer. Glazer conned the spineless mayor of Tampa, Dick Greco, into signing the most one-sided stadium deal of all time. Dick was NOT going to be the Mayor Who Lost the Bucs, no matter what it cost the taxpayers.

Tampa will soon have to start spending tens of million$$ on the Taj Glazer (a/k/a Raymond James Stadium) when it's laying off workers and curtailing essential city services.

The only way out will be a chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy. The Bucs will be held to their contract. They can move when it expires. But to a much smaller media market. Orlando said no back when Glazer was blackmailing the citizens of Tampa into building him the Taj Glazer. LA said no the Rams. Every possible destination is a much smaller market.

And if he leaves, good riddance.

g23 :

C'mon folks. Everyone knows there is only one owner in the league that routinely sabotages his team and the league:

paying exorbitant salaries for mediocre players,

questioning his head coach behind his back in public,

and allowing a losing culture to permeate every inch of his franchise:

Al friggin' Davis

Retire Al, it's past time.

Anonymous :

Are you all nuts? At least the redskins made the playoffs last year. And many thought Spurrier was an interesting and reasonable gamble.

The Detroit Lions have been the playoffs six times in the 1990's (team record!!), three times in the 80's, one in the 70's and NONE in the 00's. And they've lost all but one of their initial playoff games.

It's got to be the owners of the Lions (William Clay Ford et. al.).

Last Lions super bowl appearance = NEVER!!
(all under the same ownership). That's 40+ years, folks!!

Mike D. :

Detroit Lions fan here. Reckon there's no need to explain further.

jonspar10 :

Ditto the comments about William Clay Ford and the Detroit Lions. Considering the team that he started with (the Bobby Layne Lions of the 1950s), it is incredible that he has been able to decimate the team so thoroughly over the past 50 years. He has squandered immense talents such as Billy Sims and Barry Sanders, propped up the careers of some of the worst GMs in NFL history (Matt Millen and Russ Thomas, please stand up) and NONE -- I repeat NONE -- of the head coaches employed by the Lions during the Ford era has ever gone on to coach another NFL team. (Poor Monte Clark.) The only other owners even deserving of being in this conversation with the Fords are the Bidwells of the Chicago/St. Louis/Arizona Cardinals. No others need apply.

NoVA-Wolverine :

There is no question that the Detroit Lions take the cake. Any time fans stock up on paper bags in preparation for a season, you know there's an issue. If they could, I'm sure the people of Detroit would try to buy up the majority of stock in the Lions so that they could run part of the team (like the Great fans of Green Bay). But I don't believe the current state of the economy will allow them to do that. Oh well...keep the paper bags coming.

spankie :

Detroit Lions- The Ford family is THE worst NFL owner; fifty years, nine playoff appearances, and only one playoff victory. There's only one thing worse than the Fords; That would be the people in the Detroit area that continue to feed them. A verse in the book of Proverbs says it well; As a dog returns to its vomit, so a fool returns to his folly.

chasemonster :

The idiot who fired Marty Schottenheimer and replaced him with Norv "I rent out as a coach in my spare time" Turner.

Anonymous :

I used to like to wear my Redskins shirts in other towns' sports bars. I just don't want to anymore. I don't know what that means. I'm really proud of the long history of the team.

But now I just feel like it also means I'm some sort of little Danny Snyder bootlick, that I'll cheer for anyone he puts in a Redskin uniform, no matter how self-serving and idiotic it all is.

I SO wish Snyder would sell the Redskins.

hz9604 :

Jerry Jones is a fine owner. He has had several great teams in his almost two decades. This year's Dallas team may be the best in the NFL. Al Davis has been mediocre for a long time but he has several great teams to his credit.

Dan Snyder is a "world class amateur" (credit Sally Jenkins) owner. Dan Snyder has been horrendous now in his tenth year. The two playoff teams Gibbs had were two of the weakest playoff teams ever. The 10-6 team was followed by a 5-11. That should never happen to a legitimate 10-6 team. The 9-7 team was a result of injury to the starting quarterback so the better QB for that system could start.

Snyder should never have been given ownership of this team. No business can ever be run successfully the way Snyder is running this team. Joe Gibbs was turned into a "yes" man by Snyder and I am embarrassed for Gibbs.

Andy :

You have to define "worst," but if you exhibit ALL of the following traits:

an embarrasingly low ratio of wins to revenue;

a nine year record of ripping off fans at every possible opportunity, even charging a premium in order to get into the stadium on game day at more than a snail's pace;

arrogance and secrecy in relationships to the media, to the extent of buying up the biggest sports talk station in town;

a complete lack of football knowledge, as evidenced by his relentless offerings of bloated contracts to big name free agents whose best years were behind them;

a record of constant meddling with personnel decisions;

a refusal even to hire a general manager;

a lifelong kiss up / kick down way of dealing with those who surround him;

a dark and sour personality who casts a negative pall over the entire franchise---

there's only one choice: Daniel M. Snyder of the once proud franchise now know throughout football as the Washington Deadskins. The first 100 names in the Landover telephone directory could do a better job.

And the best part is---HE'S STILL ONLY 43!

Chiefs fan :

I don't know about worst owner, probably Al Davis, but the absolute worst General Manager is Carl Peterson. We're in the 19th year of his 5-year plan to get the Chiefs to the Super Bowl.

Eva :

Andy said it best. Snyder stinks us up and makes life long fans take feel differently about the team.

Lost_my_stripes :

Mike Brown, owner of the Cincinnati Bengals, has to be at the top. Art Modell is second. The main difference is that while Art moved the beloved Browns to Charm City, natives of Cincinnati like me just wish that Mike Brown had done the same.

Bengals' compared to conference peers by decade:

1970s--4th best overall record in AFL/AFC out of 13 teams (Tampa Bay and Seattle not counted)

1980s--5th best overall record in AFC out of 14 teams; 2 Super Bowl appearances (lost both to 49ers)

1990s--worst record in AFC out of 15 teams (including Jacksonville); one playoff appearance ('90-'91); named of the three most profitable franchises in NFLPA suit for free agency

In the late 1990s, the Brown family pressured the citizens of Hamilton County (Cincinnati) to spend $457 million on a football stadium that solidified the downtown as a concrete ghost town and strained already poor public services.

When the Cleveland Browns re-started as Version 2.0, I became a fair-weather, causal Browns fan.

Mike Lemmon :

DAN SNYDER!!! Hands down the worst. I should thank him, though. He did cure me of my longstanding Redskin addiction. Dan, you suck. You really suck!

Mike Lemmon :

Ahh, the Detroit Lions, rebuilding since 1957. (as seen on a t-shirt at the last Redskins-lions game at Fed Up field.)

riverside :

I guess it depends on how one defines "hurt". All of the teams are businesses and the individual owners have the right to run their businesses as they see fit (except Green Bay which is publicly owned). The franchise values are increasing and the owners are getting richer. I don't hear them complaining. As long as the fans line up like lemmings to buy overpriced tickets and concessions, so be it. Locally, Dan Snyder may not be a fan favorite, but he has the most valuable franchise in the NFL. So, is he hurting his team? Apparently not.

Daniel Dougherty :

I'd vote for the owner of the Dallas Texans. No further comment

Dan Dougherty

msmart2 :

I think Danny just wants to have the number one clothing boutique in the NFL. He just hasn't figured out purse and perfume angles yet.

On another note. I hear Vince Young is having a tough time handling the booze from the crowd. I think the coach has got to put his foot down and not allow drinking on the sidelines.

Eric Jones :

DR. YORK, the 49er's owner has got to be one of the top 3 worst owners in the league, hands down. Calling him a cheap skate is an understatement. I heard this guy is so cheap he checks the company phone bill statement for unnecessary long distance calls by his personal. Most of you on here posting are biased in terms of DSnyder being a pathetic owner because you are from the dc area. I live in DC, but I am originally from SF and I will tell you that ever since Eddie Dbartolo had to concede ownership of the 49ers, it has been no where but down hill!!! York is a bean counter and knows nothing about running an NFL team. It's been damn near 15 years since the San Francisco has had a competitive football team. And this will not change anytime soon with Dr. York at the helm. SF is one of the most valuaable cities in the country and we can't even field a decent NFL team??? At least Daniel Snyder is willing to spend money, regardless if he misappropriates it.

Anonymous :

Dan Snyder is a greedy pig. And he needs to change the Racist name of the Washington Football Team.

Colts fan :

Mike Brown is the worst! Btw, whomever mentioned Irsay: Get over it dude, it happened 24 years ago.

joe :

dan snyder hurts his team the most look how many coaches he done went threw since he took over the redskins when he bought them. he is just like jerry jones and al davis if a coach has to rebuild he dont watn that he wants to buy a superbowl u cant do that in the nfl.

CB :

Who owns the Lions?...that guy!

Blak Mamba :

Snyder's hands down the worst owner. He seeks yes men for coaches and fires anybody who has an iota of independent thought. Way too many old, expensive free agent busts and not enough young talent development from the draft. If the Redskins win, it's in spite of him, not because of him.

Justin :

William Clay Ford - Lions
He hired Matt Millen and will not fire him, enough said.

D. M. Rivera :

Regarding Modell and the article concerning how he hurts the Ravins...At least he pulled his team out during the daytime.

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