Roger Goodell Earned $35M In '13, According To Recent NFL Tax Return
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell earned $35M in ‘13, according to the league’s most-recent tax return, a document the league made available to THE DAILY Friday afternoon. That sum is essentially flat with the prior year, when Goodell earned $44.2M -- an amount that included $9M of deferred pay. The NFL plans to file the return with the IRS Tuesday morning. The ‘13 pay figure does not reflect the turbulent past year for the NFL, a year when the league’s response to player domestic violence incidents received harsh criticism. Goodell often took the brunt of that heat. Next month, the NFL’s three-owner compensation committee is scheduled to set his pay for the time period that will include the ‘14 season.
“The Commissioner’s total compensation in 2013 is a fair reflection of his leadership and contributions during the year,” Falcons Owner Arthur Blank, Chair of the Compensation Committee, said in a prepared statement. “Compensation packages for Roger and other senior executives are reviewed annually; accordingly, the compensation committee will conduct a thoughtful review and make a determination of 2014 compensation in March.” The Compensation Committee meeting typically occurs during the league’s annual owner’s meeting in March. The other two members of the compensation committee are Panthers Owner Jerry Richardson and Patriots Owner Robert Kraft.
Most of Goodell’s pay is bonus-based. In ‘13, for example, the owners paid him a $31M bonus, with the remainder of his compensation salary and other benefits. In ‘12, his bonus exceeded $40M (of which $5M was deferred pay).
The latest tax return also shows the NFL during the measured time period began the budgeting process to account for the league’s pending concussion settlement. The league booked a balance sheet deficit of $438M for the settlement, though no money has changed hands to this point. The figure is a book-keeping number, done for accounting purposes, the NFL said. The concussions settlement is not yet approved, and even then how much of the settlement the league might pay compared to what insurance carriers could pay is itself the subject of another lawsuit. Nevertheless, the figure caused the league’s liabilities to spike from $1.09B to $1.47B, according to the tax return. The concussion settlement, initially set at $675M, is uncapped and could top more than $1B.
The tax return reflects the balance sheet of the league office, which is structured as a not-for-profit organization. It does not include the financials of the league’s 32 teams, which do pay taxes. The league also reduced what it assessed owners to run the league office, down from $10.2M per team to $9.2M a team in ‘13, according to the return.