NFL Lockout Isn’t As Much About Money As Respect, Blame The Owners For That

People get too caught with the money that is involved and lose track of the basic principles of this situation. The NFL and the players are effectively business partners and as such each side is trying to work out an agreement that is mutually beneficial. The background on this is that one of the biggest sticking points is that the owners want to take 2 billion dollars off of the 9 billion dollars a year the league makes for expenses and then they want to work out how they split the 7 or so billion that is left. The owners say that they are faced with a down economy and increasing cost related to stadium upgrades and construction and that they need the additional money to support that. The players have always held the position that if the owners were to provide the full financial disclosure that they have requested and the data supported the owners claims then they would GIVE them the extra 1 billion dollars they are asking for. The NFL refuses to do that, we can only assume that the data will not support that.

nfl-lockoutIn economic times like this, it’s very easy to say that these are just a bunch of rich people fighting about how much more money they are going to make. The money is not the issue here, it’s the fact that the owners don’t seem to respect the players enough to negotiate with them with all the information on the table. Never before in NFL history have players so clearly understood that they really are less employees of the league and more like partners and they feel like they should be treated as such. For their part the owners want to see them as purely employees but they are more than that because they ARE the product. These players step out on the field and they put it all on the line for our entertainment but when the whistle blows and the stadium empties it is them that are left to suffer the after effects. The average NFL career is only 3 years and it seems to be steadily declining. The long careers of QB’s in particular are the exception and not the norm. People start to lose the fact that while the QB remains the same the people around them change almost constantly and the lucky ones just end up on a new team. I wonder what we think happens to the rest of those guys, I think we think they are off living the life somewhere. Yeah, that’s it because then it makes it easier for us to criticize the players in this situation. The fact is that these players put their bodies through things that we can’t even imagine and don’t complain. Their life after football is often times filled with constant pain and increasingly depression. In this conversation I don’t even question the money side of it.

The bottom line on this is that a deal will ultimately get done, there is just too much money on the line for it not to. This is a turning point in the history of the league and the ramifications of this CBA will be a milestone in the league’s history. For you NBA fans this is like a preview of what we can expect in the basketball world in just a few months. Both leagues need a fundamental shift in how they view players, they are more well-rounded than ever before, they are more business savvy than ever before and most importantly they are smarter than ever before. The majority of professional athletes can no longer be considered “dumb jocks” and the owners should  start treating them as such.

1 Comment

  1. FootballFan2011 says:

    Finally someone says it, the owners just flat out don’t respect the players and therefore they aren’t negotiating with them in good faith I don’t think. They would never treat each other like this if they were doing business with one another, if you really want to get a deal done you put it all on the tablet to make it happen. In business with this much money on the line nobody would take the other parties’ “word” for it, its nothing personal this is business and we are talking about BILLIONS of dollars. The owners need to get right and show the players the respect they deserve and this deal can get done instead of trying to keep telling them to take what we give you.

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