Blog Entry

NFLPA files decertification paperwork

Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:06 pm
Edited on: March 11, 2011 9:07 pm
Posted by Will Brinson

At 4:45 p.m., DeMaurice Smith announced to reporters the NFLPA had rejected the owners' most recent offer on a new CBA and the union was demanding 10 years of audited team financial statements by 5 p.m. Friday in order to agree to an extension of the CBA.

The league apparently didn't blink, and Smith and the union followed through with their plan to apply for decertification, having faxed the paperwork to Judge David Doty's office in Minnesota.

"The NFL Players Association it has informed the NFL, NFL clubs and other necessary parties that it has renounced its status as the exclusive collective bargaining representative of the players of the National Football League," the NFLPA said in a statement. "The NFLPA will move forward as a professional trade association with the interest of protecting the current and former professional football players."

The union also faxed a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell , informing him of the decision. In addition, and were shut down, their home pages set to "404 Error" messages that featured a new URL --

This is relatively interesting, as the NFL hasn't actually decided to lock out the players yet, though they purportedly need to make a decision before midnight to either impose the last set of rules or lock the players out, the former which might result in free agency beginning right away .

Either way, mediation, for now, has ended.

"The parties have not achieved an overall agreement, nor have they been able to resolve the strongly held competing positions that separated them on core issues," mediator George Cohen said. "No useful purpose would be served by requesting the parties to continue the mediation process at this time."

This means the NFLPA is no longer a union, but rather a trade association made up of many individuals. And it also means there's a strong likelihood the players will file an antitrust suit against the league. In fact, reports are beginning to leak out that the players have already filed suit against the NFL, and included some pretty big names as plaintiffs.

The NFL carried some pretty hefty public relation's spin in a lengthy statement of its own .

NFL Labor

No one is happy where we are now," NFL lead negotiator Jeff Pash said. "I think we know where the commitment was. It was a commitment to litigate all along."

A league statement added: "The union left a very good deal on the table."

It said the offer included splitting the difference in the dispute over how much money owners should be given off the top of the league's revenues. Under the expiring CBA, the owners immediately got about $1 billion before dividing the remainder with the players; the owners originally were asking to roughly double that by getting an additional $1 billion up front.

Also in the NFL's offer, according to the league:
  • Maintaining the 16 regular-season games and four preseason games for at least two years, with any changes negotiable. 
  • Instituting a rookie wage scale through which money saved would be paid to veterans and retired players.
  • Creating new year-round health and safety rules.  
  • Establishing a fund for retired players, with $82 million contributed by the owners over the next two years.  
  • Financial disclosure of audited league and club profitability information that is not even shared with the NFL clubs.
As you can see, the NFL didn't pull any punches when it came to laying its full proposal (or purported proposal, at least) on the table for the media and the fans. Purported is important, too, because shortly after Pash addressed the media and said many of the same thing, a players' lawyer called him a "liar." 

Pash also said, surprisingly, that there has been no decision made on whether the league will lock the players out yet or not.

That's interesting from the perspective that no lockout would dramatically change the landscape of what we expect to see come down the pipe, but it also seems unlikely that the owners wouldn't take that stance.

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Since: Aug 29, 2006
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:25 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

Major League Baseball isnt even in the same thermosphere as the NFL, and College football (while it has a solid reg. season) has the worst postseason format in ALL of sports! Hammer out a deal, guys. Plllleassse?!

Since: Dec 2, 2008
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:21 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

I'll reserve judgement until I hear what the NFL's final offer was.....what a load of !
I won't reserve judgment.  The NFL owners clearly still want 18 games and an extra $1 billion cash above what they have under the now expired CBA.  On top of that they won't demonstrate their reasons for the extra $1 billion, but I can guarantee it has everything to do with capital investments that owners want to make for the stadiums to increase revenues at the ticket turnstyles and it has absolutely nothing to do with them actually taking it in the shorts to "operate" the stadiums.

Since: Aug 10, 2007
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:21 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

Finally, a Union shown the door.


Since: Dec 2, 2008
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:19 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

Hahahaha, what a joke.  Goodell you are garbage.  I'm not at all upset by this, I can still watch high school and college football.  I will still watch games on tv whenever football starts back up, but I'm never going to any games or buying any NFL merchandise ever again.  The whole league is fueled by greed and I hope the NFL suffers from this.  I hope that baseball takes over as the #1 pro sport, even though I don't think it will happened.

At least now we won't have to hear about this crap after this week.  By then the NCAA tournament will start up and baseball is right around the corner, so NFL will be an afterthought.

Since: Mar 11, 2011
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:19 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

What a complete joke.

I understand that the NFL wants more money, and they should get it if they need to keep the league healthy.

I understand that the NFLPA wants to see the books to verify those claims, and they should have that opportunity.

However, through all of this, not a word has been mentioned about the fans.  You know, the fans?  The ones who provide the lavish lifestyle that these players and owners are bickering about?

Here is MY demand: I want 500 million dollars to be distributed to the stadiums so that they can cap the average ticket price that the FANS pay at roughly $50.  Last year the AVERAGE cost was $74 and change, so based on those numbers, we would get a 38% reduction in our out of pocket costs to go see a bunch of out of touch players perform in front of a group of more out of touch owners.

And don't give me that crap about "if it was your job, you would do the same thing."  10-20% increase in my salary means my kids may not have to take out as many student loans to go to college.  10-20% increase in your salaries means you can buy that 4th house in Aspen.

You all make me sick...

Since: Apr 11, 2007
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:19 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

I wonder how my employer would feel if I went up to him and asked for 10 years of financials in order to negotiate a raise. Call me crazy but I am pretty sure I would not have a job after that. The players have forgotten they were hired to play a game. The employers are in it to make money. This is how life goes for the rest of us. It is especially ludicrous that 21 year old players fresh out of college make 10s of millions of dollars before they even set foot on the field. Where is the incentive to actually do anything?

Since: Jul 26, 2009
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:16 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

Just never ceases to amaze me how greed on both sides kill a $9 billion industry. I would think there is enough there for everyone to get their share and play nice. It reminds me of a Luney Tunes cartoon - When Bugs Bunny and Bugsey are splitting money. 1 for me, 1 for you. 1, 2 for me, 2 for you. Ect ect.

Since: Apr 6, 2010
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:16 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

Like health care for occupants of one of sports most dangerous jobs? How about to not play 18-22 games a year when most can't finish the season without severe pain? Or is it insane to ask to see the books when the other party claims it can't afford the current deal?

Since: Aug 29, 2006
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:15 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

I'll reserve judgement until I hear what the NFL's final offer was.....what a load of !

Since: Jun 13, 2007
Posted on: March 11, 2011 5:14 pm

NFLPA officially files decertification paperwork

For the love of Pete, I am so happy.  I feel they are finally making progress by decertifying.  The owners won't need to impose a lockout because there is no union with which to bargain collectively.  Nothing will get  done until after the NCAA Basketball tournament so there should be no stories about the NFL on the sports pages.  I love America.

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