Jerry Jones brushes off reported rift with Daniel Snyder

Sources: Commanders boss Snyder claims 'dirt' on NFL owners, Goodell (3:06)

Multiple owners and league and team sources say they've been told that Dan Snyder instructed his law firms to hire private investigators to look into other owners and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. (3:06)

Though a story published by ESPN on Thursday signaled a rift between longtime confidants Jerry Jones and Dan Snyder, the Cowboys owner brushed off the reporting.

"Anything in that was news to me,'' Jones said during his weekly Dallas radio appearance. "I don't have those kinds of problems.''

One owner was told by Snyder directly that he "has dirt" on Jones," according to a team source in ESPN's report. While Jones historically has been one of Snyder's closest allies, he recently told confidants that he "might not be able" to protect the Washington Commanders owner any longer, a source told ESPN.

Cowboys spokesman Jim Wilkinson declined to comment to The Associated Press about the article.

Snyder's status is not on the agenda to be voted on at the next owners meeting Tuesday in New York, and there's no reason to believe -- as of yet -- that there are the 24 necessary votes in favor of removing him. Jones and his influence would explain that.

Jones said he has not heard of NFL owners wanting to oust Snyder.

While pointing out "owners are not natural allies," Jones made it clear he and Snyder are the exception to the rule.

"I've got a long relationship with Dan,'' Jones said on 105.3 The Fan. "It's certainly a competitive one on the field and one that is a part of the NFL."

When Snyder bought the Washington team in 1999, Jones had owned the Cowboys for a decade. Familiar with the inner workings of the league, Jones took Snyder under his wing over the first few seasons.

They sat next to each other at NFL meetings, and their friendship grew from there. In boardrooms, at times it became Snyder and Jones against their NFC East rivals: John Mara of the New York Giants and Jeffrey Lurie of the Philadelphia Eagles.

That was certainly the case in 2012 when Washington and Dallas were each punished for salary-cap circumvention and Mara said he "thought the penalties imposed were proper." Told of those comments, Jones defended himself and Snyder by saying: "That's John's opinion. That's not my opinion."

Away from football, Snyder and Jones have taken vacations together with their wives and families. They even filmed a Papa John's Pizza commercial together in 2010 at Cowboys Stadium, their natural banter a window into the Snyder-Jones dynamic that has been prevalent behind the scenes for some time.

Becoming friends in that kind of job is not normal, Jones acknowledged Friday.

"They just are not because of the competitive aspect and what it means to individual owners to compete and represent those various NFL teams," he said. "It's not a natural partnership at all. But that still doesn't mean you don't have a lot of respect for owners, and I do."