The U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Reform released its final report on the investigation into the Washington Commanders and owner Daniel Snyder.
The report alleges Snyder “permitted and participated” in the team’s toxic workplace culture and intimidated witnesses from participating in the investigation. You can find the full report here.
There were several interesting bits of news to come from Thursday, many of which centered around former team president Bruce Allen. Allen testified in front of the committee in September and was initially shocked his private emails from when he worked for Washington were leaked to the Wall Street Journal.
The leaked emails eventually led to Jon Gruden’s resignation as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders. When Allen called NFL counsel Lisa Friel to complain about the leak, he was informed by Friel that the leak came from the Commanders’ side.
“We didn’t do it at the league office,” Friel told Allen, per Allen. “It came out of their side.”
Another interesting aspect of Allen’s testimony was that he was surveilled last year.
How did he know he was under surveillance?
“My wife was concerned,” Allen’s deposition read. “We live in a—we had just moved into a home. And the street’s a real narrow street. It’s hard [for] two cars even to go by. And she saw a car out there the night before, and then in the morning it was there, and it’s running, the engine’s running. And I had made some coffee. And I went out. And the gentleman stepped out of the car, and he said, “Hi, Mr. Allen.” I said, “Well, that’s interesting. You need a cup of coffee? Are you here to serve me with a subpoena or something?” He said, “No, we’re just here to follow you,” and something like “document your actions.”
When was Allen under surveillance?
“Yes. It was in around—well, I don’t know when it started,” Allen said. “I met him I think in— right around beginning of March. But I don’t know when it started, and I don’t know if it stopped.”
How did Allen know it was the Commanders who were following him?
“The one who followed me told me the Washington Football Team hired him,” Allen said.
Since the Washington Post’s July 2020 story, Snyder has deflected blame on Allen for the organization’s toxic workplace culture, even in instances before Allen worked for the organization.
Snyder admitted in his deposition he hired private investigators but didn’t remember the specifics. Here’s an excerpt of the report:
For example, although Mr. Snyder admitted to using private investigators, he testified that he was “unaware” whom his investigators approached and did not “remember” having conversations with his counsel about the individuals targeted. admitted to using private investigators, he testified that he was “unaware” whom his investigators approached and did not “remember” having conversations with his counsel about the individuals targeted. Among the individuals that Mr. Snyder claimed he could not recall as targets of the private investigators were: Brad Baker, who had publicly alleged that Team executives ordered the creation of lewd cheerleader videos at Mr. claimed he could not recall as targets of the private investigators were: Brad Baker, who had publicly alleged that Team executives ordered the creation of lewd cheerleader videos at Mr. Snyder’s direction; John Moag, an investment banker who had represented the Commanders former minority owners in their efforts to sell their stake in the Team and who Mr. Snyder accused of leaking disparaging information about him; and Mr. Allen, whom Mr. Snyder publicly blamed for the Commanders’ toxic work environment.
Snyder fired Allen in December 2019, which led to the hiring of current head coach Ron Rivera. Snyder hired the current team president, Jason Wright, in August 2020.