Tag:Labor
Posted on: December 14, 2011 3:50 pm
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NFL approves 9-year TV deals with CBS, Fox, NBC

By Will Brinson

The NFL is a booming business and one that's set to continue growing exponentially over the next decade, thanks to the latest CBA providing 10 years of labor peace.

The business of growing began in earnest on Wednesday at the NFL owners meetings when the league announced a nine-year extensions of television agreements with CBS, FOX and NBC.

"NFL clubs have approved 9-year extensions of TV agreements w/CBS, FOX, NBC thru 2022," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello tweeted. "NFL stays on broadcast TV."

The new television deals will provide some changes to current coverage. For instance, CBS will begin broadcasting NFC and AFC games for the first time in the history of the partnership.

“CBS has been broadcasting the NFL for 52 years, and we are extremely pleased to extend our long-term partnership,” said Sean McManus, Chairman, CBS Sports. “This commitment is further proof of the valued relationship CBS shares with the NFL and of the overall strength of CBS Sports. The opportunity to add quality NFC games greatly enhances our television package. We look forward to continued growth as we broadcast the NFL for many more years to come.”

As a result of the extended agreement, CBS will broadcast Super Bowl L in 2016, Super Bowl LIII in 2019 and Super Bowl LVI in 2022, in addition to Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans in 2013. Fox and NBC will also televise three Super Bowls over the course of the agreement.

The Thanksgiving night game, aired on the NFL Network since its inception, will be moved to NBC beginning in 2012, giving each major broadcast network a holiday game.

Additionally, the deal also provides for an expanded Thursday night package on NFL Network and the possibility for "flexing" games between Fox and CBS, the latter beginning in 2014.

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Posted on: August 6, 2011 12:21 pm
Edited on: August 6, 2011 1:14 pm
 

Don't forget Canton's getting hosed this weekend

Posted by Will Brinson

If anyone does a list of lockout winners and losers, the city of Canton, Ohio has to top the list.

That's because Canton will end up losing many millions of dollars and many wasted hours of volunteer work while the Hall of Fame induction takes place.

That's a direct result of the lockout and the fact that the Rams and Bears aren't playing the (now) traditional Hall of Fame Game, which, according to the NFL, brings in $30 million for Canton in terms of an economic impact.

"We are unfortunately going to have to cancel the Hall of Fame Game this year," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said recently. "The time is just too short and we feel that 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 or near the same date."

There will still be money spent, but it won't be the same -- instead of thousands of Bears/Rams fans pouring into Canton, freely dropping coins and buying swag and pumping cash into the local economy, there will be some fans and a slew of family members for those people being inducted.

In fact, per Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the city's losting $3 million in revenue from the game alone. The NFL has apparently pledged to "compensate the committee" for its losses from that revenue.

That's nice and all but it's not going to fill up hotels, it's not going to send thousands of people to local restaurants and it's not going to fix the city's now-wrecked budget line.

Sorry for being pessimistic and pedantic and whatnot, but this is important, because we (myself included) have now been successfully trained to believe that with the lockout over and 10 years of labor peace on the books, no one was harmed by the NFL's labor strife.

That's obviously not true, and Canton's being nice about the whole process.

"The trickle-down effect is just the confusion," Joe Horrigan, VP of communications and exhibits at Canton, said recently. "If the world talks about the Hall of Fame Game being canceled, then if it's not played, a lot of people assume nothing else is happening. And that's not the case. It's the last day of a 10-day festival."

That's the nice way of handling things, and Horrigan's comments came before the game was actually canceled. You best believe that behind closed doors, the message is a lot less kind.

There's not a whole lot the league can do, though. Donate $30 million to Canton to make up for the lost money? Ha. How does "we'll let you keep the Pro Football Hall of Fame" sound?

About right, yes? That's the nature of this business and it's fine.

Well, not fine. A small city that depends on a part of the NFL is suffering financially this weekend.

And despite how much fluff is given to the ceremony because of the big names -- Deion Sanders and, ahem, NFL Network analyst Marshall Faulk -- they won't be making the same amount of money as they would if the ceremony were going full-steam and featuring the first preseason game of the year.

It's great that we have football back, of course. And it's great that we're going to avoid a lockout for 10 years. But that shouldn't make us forget that everything's not sunshine and rainbows in Canton, where a community that's the perfect representative of the average NFL fan is going to be a lot less financially enthralled this year.

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Posted on: August 3, 2011 12:59 pm
Edited on: August 3, 2011 1:12 pm
 

Players 'doubt' CBA will be ratified by Thursday?

Posted by Will Brinson

Football's been back for more than a week now. Well, kind of -- there's still the whole pesky notion of an actual CBA getting ratified in time for the beginning of the league year on Thursday, August 4.

Per the language in the NFL's official 2011 NFL Calendar on August 4, "All 2011 contracts signed on or after July 26 become effective at 4:01 p.m. ET, assuming NFLPA has ratified the CBA." (Emphasis mine.)

Reached for comment on Wednesday, the NFL also added emphasis to the language above.

"The League Year would start after the CBA is ratified by the players," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told CBSSports.com.

It's been assumed by most folks that such a ratification is as good as done (though if you were smart and subscribed to the CBS Football Podcast, you'd already know it wasn't guaranteed after our convo with NFLPA spokesman George Atallah).

But Steelers player rep Ryan Clark, according to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, spun a different story at Steelers' training camp on Wednesday.

Bouchette notes on Twitter that Clark "doubts" the CBA will be "ratified in time for those vets not practicing to join teams" by the start of the league year on Thursday.

Clark, according to Bouchette, says the "major holdup" with the ratification of the CBA "is Roger Goodell's disciplinary power." Bouchette doesn't note whether Clark's concerned with Goodell disciplining players who broke the personal conduct policy or whether the players are concerned with the actual disciplinary process going forward, but both could be considered obstacles in negotiation.

Adding fuel to the fire? Steelers' cornerback William Gay, who signed a one-year deal with Pittsburgh this offseason after hitting free agency, tweeted on Wednesday that he "probably wont be able to practice to tomorrow as accepted."

He likely means expected, but spelling's not the issue here -- the problem is that right now the public thinks football's moving full steam towards starting the league year at 4:01 p.m. ET on Thursday and there is apparently still a speed bump or two to clear first.

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Posted on: July 28, 2011 12:50 pm
Edited on: July 29, 2011 11:39 am
 

CBS Football Podcast: George Atallah talks labor

Posted by Will Brinson

The lockout just recently ended, but the labor side of things in the NFL isn't totally over just yet, as there are some issues that have to be handled (though they will be).

To discuss what's left for the NFL and the NFLPA in the coming days of collective bargaining and whatnot, we talked with NFLPA spokesman George Atallah. While we had him on the phone, we also discussed whether or not the NFLPA will fight the league if it tries to implement the personal conduct policy for people who violated it during the lockout, what the future holds for labor discussions, if free agents raking in cash is a sign that the players won, what he thinks of the NFL lockout movie we mocked up (he's seen it!), and what advice he'd give to the NBA players.

All that and much, much more just by hitting the play button below. Oh, and don't forget to Subscribe to iTunes.


If you can't view the podcast, click here to download.



Posted on: July 25, 2011 2:00 pm
Edited on: July 26, 2011 12:08 am
 

NFLPA votes to unanimously approve CBA

Posted by Will Brinson



The 32 NFLPA reps voted unanimously to approve the CBA on Monday afternoon, according to NFLPA spokesman George Atallah.

NFL Labor

That's right. The NFL is back.

"It's been a long time coming, and football is back -- that's the great news for everybody," Roger Goodell said at a press conference in front of the NFLPA offices. "I want to thank [DeMaurice Smith] and all of the players for their leadership and securing the long-term future of the game. Having a 10-year agreement is extraordinarily great for our game and most importantly our fans."

There are still a few steps before the deal is "officially" official, of course. This includes recertification as well as the approvement of the settlement. But for all intents and purposes were are ready to roll with the 2011 NFL season.

"This is a long time coming," Jerry Richardson said. "I would like to say what a pleasure it's been to work with the players in this negotiation."

Patriots owner Bob Kraft offered perhaps the best perspective on the entire situation, however.

"On behalf of both sides, I'd like to apologize to the fans," Kraft said, before complimenting the deal and the two sides for their work.

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Posted on: July 25, 2011 10:39 am
Edited on: July 25, 2011 11:36 am
 

NFLPA conference call underway, vote coming soon

Posted by Will Brinson

NFL Labor

The NFLPA announced on Monday morning a conference call with its executive committee and 32 player representatives that will take place at 11 a.m. ET on Monday.

The NFLPA player representatives will then vote on approving the deal that the two sides negotiated, a source confirmed to CBSSports.com.

This fits with the timeline previously reported by CBSSports.com's Mike Freeman, and means that we should expect to -- barring a last-minute change of heart by the executive committee -- be prepared for the beginning of the NFL offseason as shortly as the end of today.

Per Albert Breer of the NFL Network, the players are on the conference call right now "reviewing [the] summary of the deal" -- remember that, just as with last week, there are still a LOT of players that aren't completely in-tune with every single detail of the CBA. (This is simply what happens when you have 1,900 players who need to be informed; kudos to the NFLPA for getting more players to the point of understanding what's going on.)

So it's likely that issues are being explained in detail to the players rep so they can then explain said issues to their constituents.

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Posted on: July 22, 2011 9:45 pm
Edited on: July 23, 2011 9:57 am
 

What needs to happen before we get football


Posted by Will Brinson


Earlier today, CBSSports.com's Mike Freeman reported that the NFLPA plans to work throughout the weekend despite a report that the players were going to take off until Monday.

A source of Freeman's notes, too, that "the players seem to be in no hurry to ratify the CBA."

Of course, the reality is that the CBA won't just be ratified by a majority vote from the players.

There's actually a couple of things that have to happen first, where a settlement of the lawsuits is reached, the union is reformed and then the remaining issues are collectively bargained.

So let's take a look at what, precisely, will need to happen for us to get on the path to kicking off the football (off)season.

For starters, there are still a number of issues that need to be resolved, including grievances between the NFLPA and NFL, $320 million in back benefits that the NFLPA believes it's due from 2010, how to handle substance-abuse and drug testing (HGH testing isn't going to be a clear-cut answer, despite what Jeff Pash says).

No, this doesn't include handling allegedly disgruntled plaintiff Vincent Jackson, who seems intent on being freed from the franchise tag and/or recouping money from the time he lost during his previous seasons as a restricted free agent.



But Jackson is involved in the first step of the process, which is wrapping up the settlement.

For that to happen, the two sides need to agree on the settlement's final deal points and language. (Ever dealt with a lawyer and/or lawsuit before? This sort of thing can get heated, minute and complicated.) To reach a settlement, the two sides will also need to figure out what to do with the lockout insurance case.

Once the NFLPA's executive board votes to send this to the named plaintiffs (they've done so in a conditional fashion already), Tom Brady and the rest of the named plaintiffs have to sign off on the settlement.

Latest on Lockout

As soon as that happens and the court approves the settlement, the players can begin reforming the union. That requires some serious paperwork, though it's likely the trade association known as the NFLPA will have such items squared away. Most important, it also requires 51 percent of the players turning in their union cards and re-forming.

Yes, it's possible this could happen electronically, but it's more than likely that we end up seeing team facilities opened so players can come in and sign the cards and re-form.

It's also possible that incorporating such a process could be a conditional part of the settlement, though it can't be demanded by either side necessarily and shouldn't be a dealbreaker.

Once the players are re-unionized, the two sides can collectively bargain the remaining issues mentioned above.

What this means, more than anything, is that we're not just a simple vote away from getting football back. Though the owners ratified a proposal that might not have been seen by the players, and though we might feel "halfway done," there's still work ahead before we get a new CBA.

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Posted on: July 22, 2011 11:33 am
 

Mawae: players reviewing NFL proposal



Posted by Ryan Wilson

In light of a hectic Thursday that included NFL owners voting to approve the new collective bargaining agreement, and the players subsequently declining to, NFLPA President Kevin Mawae released a statement Friday morning.

"Player 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. There will not be any further NFLPA statements today out of respect for the Kraft family while they mourn the loss of Myra Kraft."

Myra Kraft, the wife of New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft, passed away Wednesday and the funeral was Friday morning.

Although it appears that the NFLPA will not vote on the proposed CBA today, there is still a sense that a deal will get done soon.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com