Play Fantasy The Most Award Winning Fantasy game with real time scoring, top expert analysis, custom settings, and more. Play Now
 
Tag:Roger Goodell
Posted on: July 21, 2011 10:30 pm
Edited on: July 22, 2011 12:16 am
 

NFLPA email says owners proposal could be illegal

Posted by Ryan Wilson

The NFLPA sent out two emails Thursday -- one from Executive Director DeMaurice Smith after the owners voted to approve the new collective bargaining agreement, and another from Richard Berthelsen, of the NFLPA legal team, that was made public after the conference call between Smith and the 32 player representatives.

The second email called into question several issues, chief among them that the NFLPA recertify as a union within a predetermined time period.

Details of the email via NFL Network's Albert Breer:

"In addition to depriving the players of the time needed to consider forming a union and making needed changes to the old agreement, this proposed procedure would in my view also violate federal labor laws," the email read. "Those laws prohibit employers from coercing their employees into forming a union, and could result in any agreement reached through the procedure being declared null and void."

NFL Network legal analyst Gabe Feldman spoke Thursday night about the NFLPA's concerns.

Latest on Lockout

"It's not only pegging the date, but it's making a deal contingent on the reforming of a union," Feldman said. "Which would be management pressuring employees to form a union -- which is illegal. You can't, as an employer, force or coerce your employers to form a union. …

"The [NFLPA] worried, I think … [that the owners' agreement says] they will recertify by July 27. And the deal's contingent on that, and the players have said all along, 'We'll recertify when we're ready to recertify."

Feldman offered a possible resolution, one that doesn't require the NFLPA to recertify by next Wednesday.

"Here's a way it can work out: Instead of [the NFL] saying we won't open up camps on July 27 unless [the NFLPA] recertifies, say 'We will open up camps, we will start the league year, conditioned on at some point you recertify.' It doesn't have to be by July 27."

For now, just like the previous 128 days, we wait.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: July 21, 2011 10:29 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 11:04 pm
 

Players decline to vote on NFL proposal

Posted by Will Brinson

The steady, optimistic road towards labor peace came to a pessimistic pile-up when the NFL owners ratified (their own) proposal to settle the labor situation and the players decided to not to vote on the proposal during their conference call with team reps on Thursday night.

It was an absolute about-face for labor negotiations that seemed to be wrapping up earlier in the day, but given the way events unfolded after the NFL's decision to ratify a proposal the players allegedly hadn't seen, the lack of a vote shouldn't be shocking.

All reports indicate that the players will vote, but that they want to understand the full ramifications of the NFL's proposal before doing so.

In fact, many a player rep said the players hadn't even seen the NFL's proposal, including Panthers rep and punter Jason Baker.

"Once we do [see the proposal] we will take the necessary time to make sure the players understand the facts, then make the appropriate decisions at that time," Baker said, per Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer.

And some optimism among players still remains, like

"We are going to get a deal done," Jaguars linebacker Kirk Morrison said on television late Thursday night.

But it's also clear that the decision to ratify a proposal the players weren't aware of didn't sit well with everyone on the NFLPA side -- look no further than some of the comments players issued to CBSSports.com's own Mike Freeman.

"Contrary to reports out there" there is no vote scheduled Friday, player rep George Wilson said, per Daniel Kaplan of the Sports Business Journal. "This is not Armageddon.

"This is nothing more than an attempt to get the fans to turn on the players."

That's exactly why we predicted this morning that public pressure would flip squarely to the players if the owners ratified a proposal today. We just didn't think it would all shake down like this.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: July 21, 2011 9:40 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 10:40 pm
 

Atmosphere anything but festive at owners meeting

Goodell, SmithPosted by Josh Katzowitz

ATLANTA -- After the vote was tallied and a new CBA had been passed by the owners, a cheer went up inside the Marriott ballroom where the owners had spent the last nine hours of their day. After months of negotiating and another long day of discussing, arguing and compromising, the owners let off a little bit of steam that could be heard outside in the hallway.

A few minutes later, Roger Goodell, flanked by NFL attorney Jeff Pash, Carolina’s Jerry Richardson, Kansas City’s Clark Hunt, New York Giants’ John Mara and Pittsburgh’s Art Rooney, entered the press conference room.

The mood, though, wasn’t quite as cheery.

There were no balloons -- or champagne corks -- popping. It didn’t feel like a day of celebration. It didn’t feel like things would be all right and that life would be good again. It felt a little apprehensive.

And for good reason. The NFLPA hasn’t signed off on the new CBA, and at first glance, the NFLPA doesn’t seem altogether happy with the new document. We might continue to find out just how unhappy the players actually are.

So, yeah, there weren’t a ton of smiles from the Gang of Six who stood behind the podium in front of the assembled media. If they thought this labor negotiation was completely finished, they might not be (probably aren’t) correct.

“They have a real incentive (to ratify)," Richardson said after the presser. "I can’t imagine why they’ve negotiated so hard, and they have received so many things they thought were important, I can’t imagine why they would not. Of course, there is (apprehension). But we’ve done what we’re supposed to do. We’ve done our half. It’s their choice now.”

Latest on Lockout

Those first two sentences from Richardson was a point made repeatedly Thursday. How, the owners reasoned, could the players NOT accept this deal?

“There are very substantial incentives to do so and to ratify and conclude the agreement,” Pash said. “It is a good agreement. It is a fair agreement. It is an agreement that will be very positive for players in many, many ways. … We would expect that those incentives would be responded to.

“I can’t imagine DeMaurice Smith is electing to pay all of those hours for his attorneys to negotiate an agreement that he and his members then decide not to ratify.”

Well, it looks like the decision to ratify might be rejected. If that occurs, we have another, perhaps larger set of problems that could jeopardize part -- or all -- of the 2011 season. Then, money is lost, paychecks aren’t cashed, fans aren’t happy.

Maybe, on Thursday after the owners voted 31-0 to pass the agreement, they knew the fight wasn’t over, and that’s why there were no fist pumps or fist bumps on display. Maybe, as Goodell said, the owners were simply exhausted from the negotiations.

Or maybe they knew something the players and the rest of us didn’t. The thing we’re only beginning to find out. That the hard part isn’t over yet; that there really was no reason to celebrate at all.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: July 21, 2011 9:01 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 9:17 pm
 

Key terms of new CBA as voted on by NFL owners



Posted by Josh Katzowitz

ATLANTA – As you know, the NFL owners voted 31-0 to approve a new collective bargaining agreement with the NFLPA that will last for the next 10 years. Also, as you know, the players haven’t approved the deal -- and ultimately they might not.

In any case, here are the key terms of the new CBA that will last through the 2020 season and includes the 2021 NFL draft (assuming the NFLPA ratifies it as it stands).

Player health and safety
  • Reducing the offseason program by five weeks and reducing OTAs from 14 to 10.
  • Limiting on-field practice time and contact (unspecified).
  • Limiting full-contact practices in the preseason and regular season (unspecified).
  • Increasing number of days off for players (unspecified).
  • Current players could remain in the player medical plan for life, and there will be an enhanced injury protection benefit of up to $1 million of a player’s salary the year after his injury and up to $500,000 in the second year after his injury. 
  • $50 million per year to a joint fund for “medical research, healthcare programs, and NFL Charities, including NFLPA-related charities.” 
Retired players benefits
  • During the next 10 years, there will be an additional funding of between $900 million and $1 billion -- $620 million of that will be used for a “Legacy Fund,” which will increase pensions for pre-1993 retirees. 
  • Other unspecified improvements to post-career medical options and the disability plan. 
Rookie compensation system
  • All drafted players sign four-year contracts. 
  • Undrafted players sign three-year contracts. 
  • A salary cap per draft class -- Limited contract terms. 
  • Strong anti-holdout rules -- Clubs can extend option of a first-round draft pick for a fifth year based on agreed-upon tender amounts. 
Economics
  • Salary cap plus benefits of $142.4 million per club ($120.375 million for salary and bonus) and at least that amount in 2012 and 2013. 
  • Beginning in 2012, salary cap to be set “based on a combined share of ‘all revenue.’” Players will receive 55 percent of national media revenue, 45 percent of NFL Ventures revenue and 40 percent of local club revenue. 
  • Player share must average at least 47 percent for the 10-year agreement. 
  • League-wide commitment to cash spending of 99 percent of the cap in 2011 and 2012. For 2013-2016, and again for the 2017-2020 seasons, the teams have to spend at least 95 percent of the cap. 
  • Minimum salaries will rise 10 percent in Year 1 with continued increases for each year. 
Transition rules
  • All teams will have about $3.5 million to fund veteran player salaries in 2011. That money comes from what would otherwise be performance-based pay. 
  • In 2011, each team can borrow up to $3 million in cap room from a future year, which would then be used for the veteran player costs. In 2012, that figure drops to $1.5 million, which can be borrowed. 
Other key points
  • Franchise tags and transition tags would remain unchanged. 
  • Player personal conduct policy remains the same and can be used to discipline players who violated it during the lockout.
  • No early opt-out clauses. 
  • No judicial oversight of the agreement. Neutral arbitrators jointly approved by the NFL and NFLPA would resolve disputes. 
  • Settlement of ALL pending litigation. 
For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.


Posted on: July 21, 2011 8:13 pm
Edited on: July 22, 2011 9:49 am
 

Smith to players: 'There is no agreement'

Posted by Will Brinson

There was much rejoicing in the land of NFL fans on Thursday night when the NFL owners voted 31-0 to ratify a settlement agreement. There's just one problem: it's not exactly in-line with what the players were expecting.

CBSSSports.com has obtained an email from NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith to the players a few moments ago that indicates precisely how they feel.

"As you know the Owners have ratified their proposal to settle our differences. It is my understanding that they are forwarding it to us," the email reads. "As you may have heard, they apparently approved a supplemental revenue sharing proposal. Obviously, we have not been a part of those discussions.

Latest on Lockout

"As you know from yesterday, issues that need to be collectively bargained remain open, other issues such as workers compensation, economic issues and end of deal terms remain unresolved.

Smith's email concludes in a fashion that should sufficiently point out how differently the players view the owners' proposal.

"There is no agreement between the NFL and the Players at this time," Smith concludes. "I look forward to our call tonight."

The biggest fear for everyone involved is that the players might see the owners' decision to approve their own deal as a way of pushing public perception against the players. And that's entirely possible, but we won't know for sure until the end of the NFLPA call.

One thing's for sure, though: this isn't over yet.



For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: July 21, 2011 7:00 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 7:45 pm
 

NFL owners vote to approve settlement

Posted by Eye on Football Staff

ATLANTA -- After a 10-minute break turned into a lengthy evening siesta that unnerved more than a number of NFL reporters, the NFL owners voted to pass a resolution approving settlement of the Brady v. NFL lawsuit, according to the NFL Network.

"The clubs approved an agreement that was negotiated with the players this afternoon," Commissioner Roger Goodell said at his press conference following the vote. "In addition to approving that agreement we also approved a supplemental revenue sharing system for the next 10 years (with no opt-out by either the owners or players during that time).

"With this ratification and with the ratification of the NFLPA board, we will be prepared to open training facilities beginning on this Saturday. We will then be prepared to start the new league year Wednesday, subject to the full membership of the players, ratifying the agreement and recertifying as a union."

So while the four-game preseason schedule and the subsequent regular season appear safe, the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio, has been cancelled.

Latest on Lockout

"Obviously, you know that we're all under a time constraint," Goodell said. "That's one of the reasons we worked to get this agreement completed tonight. We are unfortunately going to have to cancel the Hall of Fame Game this year. The time is just too short, and we feel it's important for all 32 teams to be operating with the same number of preseason games and also starting camp at the same date. … But the [Hall of Fame] ceremonies will go on."

NFL attorney Jeff Pash explained what will happen after the NFLPA ratifies.

"Once the ratification process has been completed, there would be a period where the players would come, you do their physicals, get your rosters in order," Pash said. 'Teams could begin signing their own players -- their draftees and the like -- with the contracts sort of being in a state of suspended animation.

"What would you have is an opening of the new league year perhaps on next Wednesday, July 27."

This means that the ball is now firmly in the players' court; the NFLPA has an 8:00 PM conference call scheduled.

"I just spoke to DeMaurice [Smith] 20 minutes ago," Goodell said. "He's going to go take care of his business."

In a sign of where things still stand, though, it's important to note that this does not mean everything's finished.

"To clarify: NFL Owners Ratify PROPOSAL to end LOCKOUT," NFLPA spokesman George Atallah tweeted during Goodell's announcement.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.

Posted on: July 21, 2011 1:32 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 1:43 pm
 

Owners vote would put public pressure on players

Posted by Will Brinson

Right now, there's ample pressure on both the owners and the players to get a Global Settlement Agreement locked in, so that the NFL year can begin relatively on time.

That duel pressure might not last though -- CBSSports.com's own Clark Judge reported from the owners meetings that "a majority of owners" in Atlanta on Thursday are planning to attend Myra Kraft's funeral on Friday morning.

And as a result, the owners are expected to vote on a new deal Thursday. They are also likely to ratify the deal -- every owner who's found his way in front of a camera believes there will be enough votes on the table to do so.

That means that by Thursday evening, if the NFLPA hasn't cleared the necessary obstacles to approve a settlement agreement, there could be a tremendous shift in public pressure to the players' side.

See, the owners are still locking the players out. No one's denying that. But as soon as they vote "yes" in their meeting, lift the lockout and start planning for a season there's only one group to blame if there's no football: the players.

Would it be the fault of all the players that a deal isn't taken care of by now? Of course not. In fact, there are probably two players specifically that you can point to when it comes to holding things up.

You can absolutely make the argument that Vincent Jackson and Logan Mankins deserve some compensation for not only getting hosed by the CBA but for putting their names on the Brady v. NFL lawsuit, but it's going to be difficult for their attorneys to continue justifying a hold-up of the NFL season.

Because no matter what level of compensation -- the $20 million Jackson/Mankins want, or even the $320 million the players want in back benefits, for example -- and no matter how many players we're talking about, in the eyes of the fans, it will simply not justify delaying the start of the NFL season any longer.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.

Posted on: July 19, 2011 4:42 pm
Edited on: July 19, 2011 4:48 pm
 

NFL Lockout: The Movie

Casting by Will Brinson, poster art by Ryan Wilson

We're more than four months into the lockout, which means, save the draft, more than four months without much to talk about, whether it be free agency, trades or the impending training camp battles.

So we've resorted to making stuff up. That's right, we've put our heads together for "LOCKOUT," an original motion picture* brought to you by the crack staff of the Eye on Football blog.

It has everything you've come to expect from a taut modern-day thriller ... save a few minor details. For example, there are no sympathetic figures, no strapping young male lead, no bombshell love interest and no clear storyline beyond "We want more money!" Other than that, we liken it to a cross between the Bourne vehicles and anything from the Coen brothers.
 
Okay, we've laid it on way too thick (we're blaming it on lockout fever; it was only a matter of time before we completely lost our minds). Conveniently ignoring that, we suspect that you may have your own thoughts about which actor should have been cast to portray the real-life lockout figures below. Consider this your chance to be a pretend casting director -- give us your suggestions in the comments. If nothing else, it'll take your mind off the fact that we're 126 days without football.  

You're welcome. (Click on the image to the right and the one below to make them bigger. Trust us, it's worth it.)



* This isn't quite true. The movie isn't scheduled for production and, in fact, we haven't even secured the funding for this film. To tell the truth, we're only as far as the make-believe casting and the movie poster. But you already knew that.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com