ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - In the breach of contract lawsuit between St. Louis versus the National Football League, Los Angeles Rams owner Stan Kroenke and a list of notable names were included in the latest court filing on Friday.
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, Rams chief operating officer Kevin Demoff and at least one representative from every NFL team – including most team owners.
According to the St. Louis Post-Distpach's Ben Fredrickson, the plaintiffs are requesting the most time to talk to Goodell, Kroenke, Demoff and former executive vice president of the NFL Eric Grubman – they want two, seven-hour days of deposition for each.
Among those requested for depositions are Jones, who was a major force in wanting the Rams to return to California; San Diego Chargers owner Dean Spanos, who's relocation plan was rejected by the league; and one owner who was reportedly pushing for the Rams to remain in St. Louis – former Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson.
The lawsuit by the St. Louis Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority was filed the year after the Rams officially left St. Louis. It alleges significant public financial loss was caused by a breach of contract, fraud, illegal enrichment and interference in business by the Rams and the NFL.
According to the Post-Dispatch's report, a motion filed on Friday states, "Each of the thirty-two teams had at least one person present at the vote that wrongfully allowed relocation and multiple executives attended the vote for the NFL. Those individuals and many more executives for teams and the NFL were involved in communications concerning the relocation and related, relevant matters.
"The claims in this case concern harm to and issues of the upmost importance to Plaintiffs, three government bodies, the communities that Plaintiffs represent, and more," the motion continues. "The individuals sought to be deposed are named parties to this case and have important information central to the issues at stake in this action. By the NFL’s own admission as confirmed by relevant meeting minutes, the noticed individuals were present for the relocation vote and know what was said and done before and during that meeting. Additionally, some were members of the NFL’s Los Angeles Opportunities Committee that was tasked with responsibility concerning a possible relocation of one or more clubs to Los Angeles. Each proposed deponent possesses unique, relevant evidence that Plaintiffs cannot obtain by any other means."
In April, the U.S. Supreme Court denied to hear a petition by the Rams, who wanted the lawsuit pertaining to the team leaving St. Louis to be settled in arbitration. It came after the Missouri Supreme Court's decision last September that the case should be heard in a St. Louis courtroom.
A jury trial is scheduled to begin on Oct. 25, 2021.