Jerry Jones says Dan Rooney “made all of our lives better”

FRISCO — Dallas Cowboys owner, president, and general manager Jerry Jones expressed heartfelt sadness at the passing of Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney on Thursday.

The 84-year-old son of the franchise’s founder, the late Art Rooney, had an influence that touched everyone involved in the NFL and made them better for it, according to a statement by Jones released by the Cowboys.

“This is a sad day for anyone who has had an association with the NFL,” the statement read. “Whether it be fans, players, coaches, broadcast personnel, media, team owners or club employees, Dan Rooney’s influence touched us all—and made all of our lives better.

“The Rooney’s are a royal family in the National Football League, and Dan more than capably followed in the footsteps of his father, Art, a league founder. He shaped the league with instincts, wisdom and a soft-spoken velvet touch. He was a steward and a guardian for the growth and popularity of the NFL, because he loved the game so much.

“My last in-person visit with Dan came just moments after our teams played in Pittsburgh in November. It was a thrilling game that came down to the last possession, and Dan came to the Cowboys locker room to congratulate our team. It was a touching act of kindness and sportsmanship, and a moment that will forever remind me of the dignity and class with which he lived every day of his wonderful life.

“Our thoughts are with Pat, Art II and all of the Rooney family. Dan Rooney’s spirit will be remembered and embraced for as long as young boys and men play this game – and for as long as people gather to watch and enjoy it.”

Jerry got the better of Dan during the former’s 28-year ownership of the Cowboys, going 6-2 against Pittsburgh in that span, including a 3-1 mark in Pittsburgh. The most remembered win for Jones over the Rooneys was Super Bowl XXX as the Cowboys hung on 21-17 over the Steelers at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Arizona.

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