NFL Finance Committee recommends sale of Broncos to Walton-Penner group

The NFL’s Finance Committee on Wednesday unanimously recommended the sale of the Denver Broncos to the ownership group led by Rob Walton and Greg Penner, a league spokesperson said, leaving one final step for full approval of the record $4.65 billion transaction.

“The Finance Committee met today to review details of the proposed Denver transaction,” spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement. “The committee unanimously recommended the transaction for membership approval. The committee will make a report to all 32 clubs at the special league meeting on August 9. At that time, the sale of the club will be voted upon by the full membership with 24 of 32 votes needed to approve the sale.”

There are no expected hurdles to that final approval of league owners, meaning the franchise’s first ownership change since late Hall of Fame owner Pat Bowlen bought the team in 1983 should become official in two weeks.

“We appreciate the diligence and hard work of the National Football League’s Finance Committee with its recommendation to approve our purchase of the Denver Broncos,” the Walton-Penner Family Ownership Group said in a statement. “Today’s vote marks an important milestone, and we are excited for the next step involving all of the league’s owners.”

Broncos general manager George Paton said Tuesday that he has had several conversations with members of the new ownership group, including Penner, the current Walmart chairman, and is eager for their purchase of the franchise to become official.

“One thing I know is that they are all about winning and they want to win the right way,” Paton said. “They’re going to help us set a winning culture. They will set the tone. They’ll add to what we’ve already started, so we are fired up to get them here and get them approved.”

The Broncos were officially put up for sale Feb. 1, and outgoing team president and CEO Joe Ellis said at the league meetings in March that a number of qualified suitors immediately lined up to express interest in buying the franchise. The Walton-Penner group ultimately triumphed in the competitive bidding process with a purchase of $4.65 billion, more than double the $2.28 billion amount David Tepper paid for the Carolina Panthers in 2018.

(Photo: Isaiah J. Downing / USA Today)

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