Friday, March 4, 2011

The NFL Lockout In A Nutshell....

As the clock ticks, and the fate of my favorite sport is in the hands of the CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement), the questions continue to swirl. Many are seeing the news reports on the current situation with the NFL and the lockout but they have no idea what is really going on...Well "The Sports Fashionista" is here to save you!

The Key Players: 
Players vs. NFL (the Owners)

Goodell (L) and Smith (R)

Players- The players have a labor union (NFLPA- National Football Player's Association) that is lead by DeMaurice Smith (Executive Director) and a host of players serve on the executive committee (retired player Kevin Mawae-President...other notable players are Domonique Foxworth (Ravens CB) and Drew Brees (Saints QB) . They serve as the voice of the players in the league, similar to a labor union at your job. 

NFL- The NFL is a brand that is lead by Commissioner Roger Goodell and team owners, when you think "team owner aka millionaires" the image of Jerry Jones, Bob McNair, Robert Kraft and Dan Snyder should come to mind. I have one word for them...GREED!

(Sidenote: The players will not receive any pay if there is not a 2011 season but the owners will still get the cash from TV contracts even of there isn't a season...CRAZY!)

Some of the issues that they can not seem to agree on are...

Splitting the $9 billion revenue
(The NFL's revenue comes from TV revenue, NFL merchandise, and ticket sales, which is split between players and the NFL...well the owners are unhappy with the split and they want more...GREED!)

Rookie salary
(This is one of the issues that I can agree with, there is no way that a rookie that hasn't taken a snap in the league can sign a $50+ million dollar deal...i.e JaMarcus Russell...can we say BUST!!!) 

Retirement benefits 
(Football is a dangerous sport that has a long term effect on your health, this is an issue that has been proven. The players are fighting for a revision on the retirement benefits of current and retired players.)

18 game season 
(This issue plays into the retirement benefits..there are four preseason games and 16 games in a full NFL season...well the owners are interested in changing two of the preseason games into regular season games which will make it a 18 game season, which equals more risk for the players. And the other fact about this is that they would like to add the two games at the same pay...Get OUTTA here!!!) 

There are other issues, but these are the major topics of discussion...


-The two sides agree and a deal is put into play...Lord willing that they come to an agreement soon!!!

-An extension (which is currently taking place) ...The first extension took place yesterday before the current CBA expired on March 3 at 12:00am (EST) the two sides agreed to extend the deal for 24 hours. At 2pm on March 4, 2011 both sides agreed to a 7 day extension which will extend the talks towards a negotiation until 5pm (EST) next Friday (March 11, 2011).

-A decertification is something that I fear, and I think it will only prolong the process. The decertification is the dissolving of the NFLPA as a union, which will make them a "trade association". This option will give players an opportunity to sue the NFL and represent themselves individually in antitrust lawsuits. This option will cut out the negotiations with the owners and the future of the league will be handled through the court system...Yes, it's that serious!!!! Just imagine Peyton Manning taking the stand, this could get interesting. This option is very player friendly, which means the owners should fear this. 

-The lockout, with would mean a work stoppage and no more NFL activity AT ALL!!!...except for the NFL Draft in April, but no camps. no practices, no communication between players and coaches, no signings, no trades, no pay for players...Crazy, huh? This option ceases all operation between management (NFL teams) and players.

And, but not least

-They can just go with the flow and continue under the current CBA terms which is a big compromise since both sides was unhappy with the current agreement. 

Key Terms: 

CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement)- 
a process of negotiations between employers and the representatives of a unit of employees aimed at reaching agreements which regulate working conditions. Collective agreements usually set out wage scales, working hours, training, health and safety, overtimegrievance mechanisms and rights to participate in workplace or company affairs

(Shout out to Wikipedia)

Other key words: Lockout, decertification, and extension are explained under solutions

President Obama's take on the NFL Labor Dispute and I agree 100%: 

"I'm a big football fan," Obama said, "but I also think that for an industry that's making $9 billion a year in revenue, they can figure out how to divide it up in a sensible way and be true to their fans, who are the ones who obviously allow for all the money that they're making. So my expectation and hope is that they will resolve it without me intervening, because it turns out I've got a lot of other stuff to do."

I hope this helps to explain it a bit...please stay tuned and I will keep you updated

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment : )  

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