The Cleveland Browns are on the market. One of the prospective owners is already a part-owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Would he have to give up his share of the Steelers if he landed the Browns? Couldn’t he otherwise learn things while dealing with one team that might give him an undue advantage in his work with the other?
I’m sure conflict-of-interest rules are written into the NFL by-laws, so he’d have to sell his Steelers share to buy into the Browns.
Baseball learned this lesson in the late 1800s, the owners of the Cleveland Spiders, the Robison brothers, bought the St. Louis franchise while keeping their control of Cleveland as well in 1899. They transferred all the good players to St. Louis. The result was a 20-134 season for Cleveland. The National League contracted the following year and the Spiders were history.
Somewhat similarly, the Athletics were a de facto Yankee farm club in the 1950s after the Mack family sold the team, but there were no direct ownership connections between the Yanks and the A’s.
Looks like he’ll sell his stake in the Steelers - and maybe not a moment too soon: