WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — There’s a frenzy of big names reportedly interested in purchasing the Washington Commanders.
Names like Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and rapper and music impresario Jay-Z have emerged in published reports as a potential tandem. Media mogul and one-time comedian Byron Allen is also reportedly preparing a bid.
The reports of interest began to surface Thursday, one day after embattled Commanders owner Daniel Snyder has reportedly hired Bank of America to explore selling the franchise.
Others are expected to line up as purchasing a National Football League team is a rare, difficult venture given that the majority of the owners have for decades seen themselves as a select group.
George Perry, a sports management expert and a professor at George Mason University, said the NFL group “is small because they’ve got to be billionaires, basically,” and that they will be checking whether to vet the financial security of any potential owner or owners.
“As much as the NFL can, they’re obviously very concerned about their brand and who they are and what they look like,” Perry said.
Perry, who once worked for Snyder’s team with marketing, said that there’s a reason why it’s a select group.
“You’ve got a lot of old-school, older white males that have been in the league for a long time,” he said.
Snyder has owned the team for 23 years and has been under investigation on a number of fronts from the U.S. Attorney’s office to the DC Attorney General’s office as well as Congress.
He reportedly ran afoul of several NFL owners, too, following a scathing investigation into a culture of sexual harassment and workplace problems.
And fans have long turned on the owner, too, who for years declined to change the name of the team which was a Native American pejorative. It then became the Washington Football Team to now the Commanders.
Perry said that Snyder has nearly run out of options given all the fan anger and investigations coming his way.
As for a new prospective owner, it will be a long and difficult process.
“It all comes down to the highest bidder and convincing 24 out of 32 owners to approve that person based on their financial stability and their character,” Perry said.