Blog Entry

2011 NFL Lockout Timeline

Posted on: May 26, 2011 1:33 pm
Edited on: July 25, 2011 3:37 pm
Posted by Eye on Football Staff

Because you need reminding, there's a lockout going on. Just kidding -- we did think it'd be helpful to break down the full lockout timeline.

July 25, 2011: And then ... there was football. The NFLPA voted unanimously to approve the deal. Now the issues of recertification, settlement approval and some collectively bargained issues will take place. But football's back.

July 22, 2011: NFLPA releases a statement that "leadership is discussing the most recent written proposal with the NFL, which includes a settlement agreement, deal terms and the right process for addressing recertification."

July 21, 2011: NFL owners vote to approve the proposed CBA, outlining key terms and including a tentative schedule for the 2011 season. Players decline to vote to ratify the proposal, prolonging the lockout, which is now 128 days old.

July 8, 2011: The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals handed down a surprise ruling -- in terms of timing, not the decision -- that the lockout is legal. It was a surprise because the owners and players were in the midst of such positive negotiations and both sides seemed to make progress up until the ruling came out.

June 3, 2011: The NFLPA and NFL argued against and for, respectively, the lockout in front of the Court of Appeals, and the three-judge panel said a decision would come in "due course." Judge Kermit Bye, though, said he wouldn't be hurt if the two sides negotiated a new deal, especially since the court's ultimate decision could be one neither side likes. Also, in a somewhat strange twist, NFL lawyer Paul Clement charged the players with acting like a union while negotiating with the owners. Strange, because the NFL is actually the one who encouraged the union to negotiate with the owners.

June 2, 2011: Judge Boylan cancels the previously scheduled June 7-8 mediation session in Minneapolis because "the Court has been engaged in confidential settlement discussions." Also, reports confirm that a series of meetings took place that week, between NFLPA representatives, Goodell, and a small group of owners.

May 24, 2011: A league source tells that the NFL will cancel the Rookie Symposium. Not that this news should surprise anybody.

May 17, 2011: The two sides returned to mediation, but by 2:15 p.m., the talks Whad ended. Mediation will not resume until June 7.

May 16, 2011: The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals issues a permanent stay on the injunction ruling by Nelson. The lockout is back on, and the majority opinion questions the validity of Nelson’s ruling. Suddenly, the owners have big-time leverage.

May 16, 2011: Per court orders, mediation resumes. Neither side publicly expresses any interest in getting a deal done.

April 29, 2011: The lockout is reinstated during the middle of Day 2 of the draft after two of the three judges in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals grant the owners’ request for a temporary stay.

April 27, 2011: Owners request that Nelson issue a stay on her ruling while they begin working on their appeal to the conservative Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis. That request, surprisingly, is denied. The lockout is lifted.

April 25, 2011: Nelson rules in favor of players in Brady v NFL, temporarily lifting the lockout.

April 20, 2011: Citing scheduling issues on Boylan’s end, bargaining is put on hold until May 16.

April 14, 2011: Bargaining begins in front of Boylan after two days of preliminary meetings.

April 11, 2011: Nelson mandates court-ordered negotiations between players and owners to begin in front of Magistrate Judge Arthur Boylan.

April 6, 2011: Judge Susan Nelson begins hearing arguments in Brady v NFL.

March 12, 2011: The lockout officially begins. The players file a lawsuit with Eighth Circuit Court in Minnesota (Brady v NFL) seeking an injunction for the lockout to be lifted.

March 11, 2011: After rejecting the owners’ final proposal, the NFLPA decertifies.

March 4, 2011: CBA deadline is extended by one week, an unprecedented move in NFL history.

March 3, 2011: With owners and players having bargained in front of Cohen for 16 days, CBA is set to expire, but the deadline is pushed back 24 hours.

March 1, 2011: U.S. District Judge David Doty rules that owners won’t have access to $4 billion in television revenue in the event of a lockout. This compromises a significant amount of the owners’ leverage.

February 17, 2011: With talks moving slowly, both sides agree to bring in federal mediator George Cohen.

February 15, 2011: Goodell writes an op-ed that appears in newspapers nationwide saying an agreement is needed.

January 31, 2011: Smith and Goodell agree to a series of meetings over the course of "a few weeks."

December 4, 2010: After months of public posturing from Goodell and owners and Smith and key players from the union, Smith writes a letter to the NFLPA saying the “deadline has now passed.” It’s an informal deadline but aggressive public posturing by Smith.

March 5, 2010: The 2010 League Year begins with no salary cap.

February 2010: At Super Bowl XLIV, Smith is asked about the chances of the NFL being shut down before the 2011 season. He says, on a scale of 1-10, it’s a “14”.

February, 2010: With the CBA stipulating that the salary cap be abolished in the final year of the deal (an idea initially meant to motivate both sides to extend the deal sooner than later), the NFLPA proposes to extend the salary cap system for another year. The owners reject.

March 16, 2009: DeMaurice Smith is elected as new executive director of NFLPA. Smith’s campaign platform centered on him being an outsider who, unlike Upshaw, did not have warm relationships with the league and owners.

August 21, 2008: NFLPA executive director Gene Upshaw dies unexpectedly of pancreatic cancer.

May 20, 2008: In a unanimous vote, owners exercise their opt-out clause. CBA is now set to expire March 3, 2011.

September 1, 2006: Roger Goodell replaces Paul Tagliabue as NFL commissioner.

March 8, 2006: With CBA expiring, commissioner Paul Tagliabue passionately implores the owners to extend the agreement through the 2012 season. Every owner except Mike Brown of Cincinnati and Ralph Wilson of Buffalo votes to do so. But a stipulation in the CBA extension is that owners can opt out in ’08 and cut the CBA’s length by two years.

2003: CBA extended until 2006.

March 23, 1998: Owners vote to extend CBA until 2003.

June 29, 1993: Players and owners approve Collective Bargaining Agreement for first time since 1987 strike. CBA is set to last until 2000. This brings about the creation of free agency and the salary cap.

Since: Jan 25, 2011
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:47 am

2011 NFL Lockout Timeline


If owners and player can't decide on how to divide billions of dollars that are funneled into the industry by the fans who pay for tickets, attend games, buy licensed NFL team clothing and the huge chunk of TV revenue from advertisers that spend their money based on the assumptions that fans are watching, then I would suggest they just not play and see what it's like to have nothing to divide.

I am a die-hard supporter of my team as a fan and as one that contributes financially as well. I am also a believer that we the fans, have the power to send a strong message to both the NFL and the Players that those who support them do it by choice and are not happy with them. From a business (which what the NFL is) perspective, you can only push your customer base so far before they lose interest. Let's see them pay their bills and try run their businesses when there is nobody in the stands (game played in empty stadium, what a concept), nobody watching TV or buying NFL team stuff!

Since: Dec 10, 2006
Posted on: May 31, 2011 7:06 pm

2011 NFL Lockout Timeline

September 1, 2006:  It all starts going downhill.

Finally, politics have taken over the NFL.  Every Republican appointed judge will side with the owners, every Democratic appointed judge will side with the players.  Politics have ruined everything else in this country, it might as well take football too.

Since: Aug 20, 2006
Posted on: May 31, 2011 2:08 pm

2011 NFL Lockout Timeline

Let me first say: "I LOVE football. I'm a fan." 
Now, that said, I can think of nothing I want more than for there to be NO NFL football until the owners break these pampered a-holes and get the league straightened up.  I'm sick of these whining millionaires whose only redeeming qualities are stellar 40 times and the ability to manipulate a small leather object.  I'm sick of the unholy endorsement money, felony criminal activities, moral failures, and the various Randy Moss, Albert Haynesworth, Ben Rothlisberger, and Brett Favre circus acts. Don't even get me started about the Kraft family and their cheating empire, the logic behind handing JaMarcus Russell or Ryan Leaf multi-million dollar contracts OUT OF COLLEGE, or you can award the rookie of the year award to a donkey you KNEW was all juiced up when he was doing all that "stellar" play-making.  Ugh.
I'm not saying the owners aren't all greedy sob's, but that's the way it is: owners set the rules, take the financial risks and set the wages. Labor, works. And despite what you've been spoon fed, these guys WILL play for (much) less, or find that they are very replaceable. You think the owners and senior management at Coca-Cola, Morgan Stanley and Lockheed make anywhere near what their employees earn?!  And most of those employees aren't drawn from the dog-fighting, child support dodging, rapist, drug abusing cesspool that seems to be the flavor de jure in the NFL.
As a wise man once said, "this town needs an enima!"

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