Blog Entry

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

Posted on: April 7, 2011 1:53 pm
Edited on: April 7, 2011 2:22 pm
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Posted by Will Brinson

UPDATE (2:00 PM EST): CBSSports.com has obtained a copy of the players' letter to Judge Nelson and the NFL's counsel requesting mediation.

During yesterday's lockout hearing, Judge Susan Nelson urged both sides on the Brady v. NFL case to proceed with settlement talks -- in the manner of federal-court monitored mediation -- while she took a few weeks to make her ruling.

Predictably, the NFL wasn't particularly gung-ho about the idea of engaging in binding mediation with Judge Nelson presiding (though the players, obviously, were).

Liz Mullen of the Sports Business Journal reported that the players were expected to send a letter to the NFL asking to begin federal mediation.

We've confirmed, via sources close to the situation, that the players are indeed sending such a letter to the NFL on Wednesday afternoon.

It probably won't matter much, as the NFL -- even with the formal request -- is unlikely to acquiesce and enter into such mediation.
NFL Labor

In fact, Mullen's also reported that the NFL will send their own letter to the players in Brady, requesting that the two sides resume mediation under the watch of George Cohen of the Federal Mediation and Counseling Services in Washington, D.C.

Again, no surprise there. What makes the NFL's case here a bit problematic is that the federal judge watching over the antitrust case didn't request that the two sides begin mediation with Cohen.

And though she'd probably be okay with any talk of settlement, it's unlikely to happen. As we detailed yesterday, there's a serious issue of semantics at hand when it comes to the way can even begin to settle.

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Comments

Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 9, 2012 7:48 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 3, 2012 8:35 pm
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hgtrerte
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 7, 2011 9:10 am
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 5, 2011 9:45 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

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Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: April 8, 2011 10:16 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

Nobody has explained why the decertification is a sham because it isnt a sham.  It is in fact a legal way of getting the argument into court.  The NFLPA has done it in the past and it worked out very well for them so anybody who didnt think they would do it again is a fool.  You might not agree with it but it is very legal as the judge stated at the hearing.
I'm not questioning it's legality at all-- I'm fully aware it was a legal tactic.  But to decertify and then re-certify after the process is all over completely circumvents the spirit and intent of labor laws.  The core concept behind decertification is that the Union no longer represented or was performing at the behest of its members.  The NFLPA was working completely at the opposite end of this argument.  If the Union membership was not pleased with the work of its Union, then decertification would make sense.  They simply used it as a side-door entrance into the court system.

The legality of decertification isn't questioned by anyone.  I challenge the intent of decertification other than getting the dispute in front of a judge.  When union representatives readily admit they will recertify shortly after the contract dispute it settled with the NFL, that makes decertification a sham.  I would actually propose that beyond working condition disputes, which are absolute fodder for labor relations boards and mediators, the pro sports leagues have no business taking up court time with what is, essentially, a pissing match over who gets how much of a $9 billion pie.  The least of the concerns and grievances from the Union are truly centered on working conditions.  Besides attempting to lengthen the regular season, what are the players complaining about?  It's all about the Benjamins.



Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: April 8, 2011 8:41 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

Nobody has explained why the decertification is a sham because it isnt a sham.  It is in fact a legal way of getting the argument into court.  The NFLPA has done it in the past and it worked out very well for them so anybody who didnt think they would do it again is a fool.  You might not agree with it but it is very legal as the judge stated at the hearing. 

Your second point is right on.  But the reason is becoming more and more clear as this draws out.  The owners arent taking to the street with a media blitz because everyone has and will continue to ask them WHY they need to cut back the players piece of the pie.  It isnt enough to say cost are going up.  You need to show they are going up and the owners are unwilling to do that because they all have financial secrets they would all like to keep secret.  I heard on an NFL radio show that the McCaskies dont want anybody to see how many of them are on the pay roll for the Bears and that the owner of the Bengals doesnt want anybody to see what a sweet deal he has with the county in which the bengals play.  Doing this will open every team up to rediculous scrutiny.

The owners are the ones in a tough spot.  They need to convince the public the courts and the players why they need to roll back player compensation in a time of growth for the company without showing any real financial data.  The only way they can do this is by locking the players out and trying to force them into a better deal for the owners with an our way or no way scenario counting on the players folding to the pressure when pay checks actually start to get missed.  Hopefully the courts do the right thing and stop that from happening.



Since: Sep 13, 2006
Posted on: April 8, 2011 6:02 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

sorry -- and I meant the excellent post that should be read is the one by OleHoss ... not my own;)



Since: Sep 13, 2006
Posted on: April 8, 2011 6:01 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

Excellent post that should be read.  There is a lot of emotional drivel in this thread that is purely personal political reaction to a labor dispute. 

On the bottom of all of this is the inescapable fact that how the NFL does business is a stark violation of the normal free market regulations that govern every other industry.  For those who think it is the Union that most desires a CBA -- think again.  The owners are well aware that the only way they can reap billions yet still control their own stupid spending -- via the likes of Jones and Snyder et al -- make moeny on drafts, have non-guaranteed contarcts and cap wages (among other things) is via a CBA that avoids federal law and statute.  The player like a CBA that is good for them but they can live with a pure free market system -- no draft, no RFA, no caps, no floors and players free to sign whatever contract some idiot is willing to throw at them. 

The reason the parties cant agree right now is not purely b/c of revenue split.  It is because the owners want to fix wages and fix caps/floors and wage increases contractually.  They want to delink the wages pool from overall revenues.  I believe the players would rather play under no CBA and pure supply and demand than that.  Also remember the owners are not unified either.  There are owners that are really pushing for a baseball type model -- a model tha has no cap and turns teams into less about scouting and smart football decisions and more about individual team revenue streams from stadiums, merchandise, individual TV/radio etc ....  If the Union and CBA go away get ready for the next owner battle which will be doing away or scaling back revenue sharing, 



Since: Dec 10, 2008
Posted on: April 8, 2011 1:05 am
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

How about this? Who cares? Play football, make the fans happy and keep making money (both sides). They'll lose some fans if this keeps on... Ask the NHL...



Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: April 7, 2011 10:08 pm
 

Source: Players send NFL letter asking to mediate

One thing that NFL columnists & beat writers have failed to explain to any extent is how the NFLPA decertification isn't a sham.  They still have the same representatives talking for them publicly when it's time for a juicy quote.  DeMaurice Smith hasn't disappeared.  How have they done anything but change their letterhead and hung out a sign that equates to "under new management" when all they've done is change the furniture around in the offices?

With that being said, the owners don't have a solid understanding of their view in the public.  If they were as smart as they are wealthy, they'd be out beating the drums, giving interviews to ESPN on a daily basis and presenting a simple case of why they want to change how the money gets divided.  They had a golden opportunity a few weeks ago when a couple of the dumbest players on the planet started spouting off about living in the NFL was akin to slavery.  The owners also missed a chance when representatives from the NFL Alumni appeared to be snubbed/ignored by Smith.  If the NFL owners reach out to the Alumni and work out an attractive health care plan and a set-aside fund to take care of those who built the game, they could have painted the NFLPA into a corner publicly..


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