DALLAS – Cowboys owner Jerry Jones sounded off on Tuesday morning, hours after running back Ezekiel Elliott was denied a preliminary injunction that would have stayed his six-game suspension by the NFL.
Elliott will be suspended until the Cowboys play the Oakland Raiders on Dec. 17, barring another, last-minute appeal.
Jones said Elliott is paying for the mistakes commissioner Roger Goodell made when he dealt with the Ray Rice domestic violence case in 2014.
Rice was initially suspended for two games, then suspended indefinitely when a tape surfaced showing the incident.
"His (Goodell’s) swing of judgment has been unbelievable from the Ray Rice thing (from) one or two games all the way up to a six-game suspension when you truly have got a debate," Jones said. “Even this judge said very reasonable people can come down on both sides of this.”
“I do have every point of contention on both sides and in our system in this country, Zeke would not have any issue here as to his workplace,” Jones said. “With the knowledge I have, the circumstances aren't treating him fair. Two years ago, this wouldn't be an issue before Ray Rice.”
Jones made it clear during the interview he did not condone domestic violence from his players or staff.
"If we have a player or we have somebody guilty of domestic violence, they shouldn't play," Jones said. "But this isn't the case. He’s not, in our society, he’s not guilty of that."
Jones was asked if he felt the league was making a statement to appease the masses. “Absolutely,” he said.
The NFL suspended Elliott in August after the league announced it had enough evidence to show that Elliott was violent toward a former girlfriend in 2016.
Authorities in Columbus, Ohio decided not to press charges against Elliott due to what they said was inconsistent evidence.