2021 Lockout: To Be or Not to Be, the Bank Accounts Will be the Question

maufman

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Isn't the antitrust exemption unique to MLB?

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radovich_v._National_Football_League

Radovich v. National Football League (NFL), 352U.S.445 (1957) is a U.S. Supreme Court decision ruling that professional football, unlike professional baseball, was subject to antitrust laws.
My understanding is that the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961 allows NFL (and other sports leagues) to jointly sell broadcast rights to their games without violating antitrust laws. MLB's exemption is much broader.
 

pappymojo

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I just don't see the NFL as an organization that will indefinitely honor an informal agreement that stands in the way of making money. Honestly, why should the most popular sports league in America sacrifice prime time television for both Friday and Saturday nights? That seems like an obvious idea for the league to renegotiate/reconsider.
 

soxhop411

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Two Goodell articles came out today.

NYT:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — After a recent preseason game here, the walking wounded roamed the Pittsburgh Steelers’ locker room. They had not been injured on the field, but were among the many players bruised by the disciplinary practices of the N.F.L. and Roger Goodell, the commissioner of the most powerful sports league in America.

In one corner sat linebacker James Harrison, whom Goodell had threatened to suspend indefinitely if he did not speak to investigators about allegations that he had used steroids. No stranger to controversy, Harrison called Goodell a “crook.”

Running back Le’Veon Bell, who walked past Harrison’s locker, will sit out the first three games of the regular season because he failed to report for a drug test, his second drug-related suspension in two seasons.

Nearby was quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who received a six-game suspension after he was accused of sexual assault in 2010. (The penalty was ultimately reduced to four games.)

Then there was guard Ramon Foster. He may incur Goodell’s ire in a different way, as the team’s union representative and one of several players across the league who are now preparing their brethren for a yearslong fight to rein in Goodell’s power.

Goodell’s application of disciplinary policy, and his unwillingness to appoint an independent arbitrator to hear appeals, has corroded the fragile trust between him and the players, who see him as judge and jury, Foster and other union representatives said.

To push their point, they have already told players to start setting aside money in case the players ultimately end up on a picket line without a paycheck.
More at the link.

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/09/09/sports/football/roger-goodell-nfl-players-union.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0&referer=



Former vice president of officiating and current FOX Sports rules analyst Mike Pereira recently authored a book along with Rick Jaffe titled, ‘After Further Review: My Life Including the Infamous, Controversial, and Unforgettable Calls that Changed the NFL.’

Deadspin obtained an except from the book, which details a fight between Pereira and commissioner Roger Goodell, where Goodell may have taken things a bit too far over a disagreement.

The story goes back to Week 16 of the 2001 season and a game between the Browns and Jaguars in Cleveland and referee Terry McAulay.

The excerpt details what occurred: Here are the basics. There were less than two minutes left in the game, and the Browns had the ball but were trailing. Cleveland quarterback Tim Couch completed a fourth-down pass that appeared to be a first down, but with no timeouts left, the clock continued to run. Couch ran up to the line of scrimmage to spike the ball for the next play, and after the ball got spiked, the officials signaled the replay official had buzzed down right about the same time as the ball was snapped.

McAulay and his umpire, Carl Paganelli, said that they felt the buzz, and both felt it came right before the snap. McAulay reversed the call because it was clearly incomplete, and because it was a fourth-down play, the ball was awarded to Jacksonville, essentially ending the game.

Fans began to throw bottles on the field and McAulay ended the game, but he didn’t have the power to actually do that — only the commissioner did. The league got on the phone with McAulay immediately and forced him to get the teams back on the field to finish the final 48 seconds
http://itiswhatitis.weei.com/sports/newengland/football/patriots/2016/09/08/roger-goodell-once-shoved-nfl-director-of-officiating-mike-pereira-into-door-over-disagreement/

More at the link.
Argument occurs and Goodell pushes Pereira into a door
 

Shelterdog

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There's a longstanding, informal agreement that the NFL won't play on Friday nights or Saturdays until after the college football regular season ends. Congress would come down like a ton of bricks on the owners if the league violated that informal agreement.
That's actually part of the sports broacasting act of 1961 (take a look at 15 USC 1293). Bascially the NFL can't be broadcast within 75 miles of a friday night or saturday high school or college game.
 

Bleedred

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I posted this in the Bill Simmons thread. If you saw Demaurice Smith on AGW, I saw a defeated union head who basically acknowledged what people have been saying here for sometime. The NFLPA has no chance against the owners because players will cave in any "strike" scenario as soon as the strike enters its 5th or 6th week because a healthy % of his union can't afford to miss the paychecks. He didn't quite say it unecquivocally, but when Simmons and M. Galdwell came up with ideas as to what the NFLPA could/should do, Smith's responses were appreciative but then instructive by pointing out that the players have no leverage.
 

Rick Burlesons Yam Bag

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I posted this in the Bill Simmons thread. If you saw Demaurice Smith on AGW, I saw a defeated union head who basically acknowledged what people have been saying here for sometime. The NFLPA has no chance against the owners because players will cave in any "strike" scenario as soon as the strike enters its 5th or 6th week because a healthy % of his union can't afford to miss the paychecks. He didn't quite say it unecquivocally, but when Simmons and M. Galdwell came up with ideas as to what the NFLPA could/should do, Smith's responses were appreciative but then instructive by pointing out that the players have no leverage.
I didn't take away the same read from the interview, but I see the union a lot differently than I think you do. I felt that DeMaurice Smith was politely acknowledging Simmons' ideas the same way that Bill Belihick politely acknowledges old ladies at the supermarket who tell him that he needs to run the ball more.

The NFLPA has secured the highest percentage of revenue coming out of any major sport, in a sport that has grown faster than any other over the last 20 years. They are doing more right than they are wrong. As a union, I feel that they are failing on the issues of PEDs, helping players with financial security (tangent - why has no one developed annuity contracts?? Don't hand a kid $6MM, hand him $750k and $250k for the next 20+ years. Hang on....I'm getting older and it takes me longer to get off my soap box) and some of the longer term health issues, but I'm not sure how much their membership - and their agents - are pushing for those.

Non- Guaranteed contracts are always cited as a failure by the union, but ultimately the money goes from one member to another member. Non-guaranteed contracts have been good for the sport, but philosophically they are hard to swallow. I've never had a problem with them as most humans work under non-guaranteed contracts (and often lose jobs due to external forces outside of their control) but I do understand the sentiment.

I guess I don't see the argument that the union has no leverage. Personally, I think that the next agreement will be somewhat cookie cutter from the current, unless they really want to get into some of the structural issues (long term health, PEDs) or there are new revenue streams (international enhancement, gambling(?), who knows?) that need to be divvied up.
 

Bleedred

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I think you're right about how D. Smith would characterize his success for the players. He made a strong point about how much the revenue pie has grown, and by extension, how the players have benefitted enormously during his tenure by the consequent salary growth. I guess what I was reacting to was the notion by Simmons and Gladwell that a strike is the way to effect leverage on the owners, and on that score, I think Smith politely suggested that ain't happening because the players could never sustain it. The analogy between (i) smith's treatment of gladwell and simmons and (ii) Belichick and old ladies is a good one.
 

Rick Burlesons Yam Bag

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I think you're right about how D. Smith would characterize his success for the players. He made a strong point about how much the revenue pie has grown, and by extension, how the players have benefitted enormously during his tenure by the consequent salary growth. I guess what I was reacting to was the notion by Simmons and Gladwell that a strike is the way to effect leverage on the owners, and on that score, I think Smith politely suggested that ain't happening because the players could never sustain it. The analogy between (i) smith's treatment of gladwell and simmons and (ii) Belichick and old ladies is a good one.
I was surprised that Gladwell got behind this one as he seems to, more often than not, see the big picture.

What scared me a bit was that it did seem like Smith was saying "guys would go broke," but I may have been transferring that on to him some. I think, to me, that the more compelling case against a strike is that it takes an inherently disproportionate toll on current players. If the average career is 3 - 6 seasons (depending on how you define "career football players".....), and if you assume that the average strike will last a quarter of a season, you are asking the average player to give up between 4 and 8% of their career earnings potential. If I were to strike for an entire year it would be very tough for me, and I would only give up about 2-3% of my career earnings potential. A strike is a very tough tool for Smith and the NFLPA to wield.
 

nattysez

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Bumping this old thread since the sword-rattling is starting up again.

Per Liz Mullen of SportsBusiness Journal, Smith sent an email to every NFL agent saying that the union is "advising players to plan for a work stoppage of at least a year in length" when the collective bargaining agreement ends after the 2020 season.

Just 100 days from the NFL's centennial season, the looming threat of a work stoppage continues to be a hot topic in league circles.

Smith told The MMQB's Albert Breer two years ago that a lockout before the 2021 season was "almost a virtual certainty."
https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2838363-nflpa-executive-director-demaurice-smith-warns-agents-to-plan-for-work-stoppage
 

RetractableRoof

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There are a few topics mentioned here that would/should be on any table for must haves by the players. Money, health, discipline cover just about everything really - but there are some details I'd expect to show up. Removing Marijuana use from disciplinary testing (assuming it's used in a legal manner/state) is certainly one. Players like Gordon are getting crushed for what many states are deciding is a legal activity.
 

Red Averages

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I have no idea what will happen with regards to the lockout - but it seems like any sort of work stoppage would risk the treasure trove of assets that'll flow to the NFL as legalized gambling takes hold over the next few years. Viewership will continue to rise as engagement levels increase from betting & daily fantasy & legal pick 'em pools.
 

nattysez

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j-man

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remaring 2011 all this lockout will do in 2021 is make everything ex the draft happen in late july august

here is what the players should fight for
1 14 game sch 2 bye weeks bye before or after thurday game
2 goodell cant just suspend players

side issues
FA after 3 years instead of 4 after round 1 for draft picks
give teams the right to cut 1 player a year with no cap plenty
make teams spend up to 98% of cap I am talking about teams like CINY INDY ETC
let teams QB'S starters only be paid by league office
NO Resticted FA
 

nattysez

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What do you mean by this "let teams QB'S starters only be paid by league office"?
 

axx

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I have no idea what will happen with regards to the lockout - but it seems like any sort of work stoppage would risk the treasure trove of assets that'll flow to the NFL as legalized gambling takes hold over the next few years. Viewership will continue to rise as engagement levels increase from betting & daily fantasy & legal pick 'em pools.
I dunno, even with viewership increase it has to be getting more and more difficult for the networks to justify taking huge losses on NFL broadcasts. Is Disney going to reconsider re-upping or is there any reason to think that Amazon or whoever will offer anywhere near what Disney is paying now for ESPN's broadcasts?

I would say avoiding a huge drop in the cap due to bad TV deals has to be priority #1 for the union.
 

DrewDawg

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remaring 2011 all this lockout will do in 2021 is make everything ex the draft happen in late july august

here is what the players should fight for
1 14 game sch 2 bye weeks bye before or after thurday game
It's apparently more likely they'd go to 18 games. The NFL will not lower the amount of games, that's lost revenue.

There's also talk of adding 1 playoff team to each conference, meaning only 1 bye.
 

BusRaker

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It's apparently more likely they'd go to 18 games. The NFL will not lower the amount of games, that's lost revenue.

There's also talk of adding 1 playoff team to each conference, meaning only 1 bye.
Or a compromise to 18 weeks with 2 byes, meaning another set of nationally televised games and but still more work for players (unless they can bargain for more non-football days to come out of the extra week)
 

j-man

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It's apparently more likely they'd go to 18 games. The NFL will not lower the amount of games, that's lost revenue.

There's also talk of adding 1 playoff team to each conference, meaning only 1 bye.
i understand they will not lower games that is just something i wouild do

if each conference added just 1 team playoffs there wouild need to be a double bye 1 seed and byes for the 2'3 seeds

the only way u couild do it is this last year playoff sit up
1 KC
2 NE
3 HOU
4 BALT
5 LAC
6 INDY
7 TENN

TENN playes indy winner playes hou
 

DrewDawg

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i understand they will not lower games that is just something i wouild do

if each conference added just 1 team playoffs there wouild need to be a double bye 1 seed and byes for the 2'3 seeds

the only way u couild do it is this last year playoff sit up
1 KC
2 NE
3 HOU
4 BALT
5 LAC
6 INDY
7 TENN

TENN playes indy winner playes hou
No....

2 plays 7
3 plays 6
4 plays 5

Next round there are 3 winners and the team with bye left.

EDIT: Or what tims4wins said
 

HowBoutDemSox

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The Packers reporting a profit of less than a million for the most recent fiscal year:
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers reported a profit of just $724,000 in their latest fiscal year, which included their second consecutive season without a playoff appearance, a large contract extension for quarterback Aaron Rodgers and a change in head coach from Mike McCarthy to Matt LaFleur.

Green Bay's profit in the year ending March 31 was down 97.9% from $34.1 million in the year ending March 2018 and down more than 99% from the record $75 million in the previous fiscal year.

"From a financial standpoint, it was a unique year for the Packers," team president Mark Murphy said Friday.

Expenses rose from $420.9 million to $477.2 million, boosted by Rodgers' $134 million, four-year deal and contracts for several free agents: outside linebackers Za'Darius Smith and Preston Smith, safety Adrian Amos and guard Billy Turner.

"We were a little more aggressive than we've been in a number of years," Murphy said.

While overall revenue increased 5.1% to $477.9 million, local revenue improved by only 2.3%, hurt by consecutive losing seasons that affected pro shop visits and tours of Lambeau Field and the Packers Hall of Fame.
 

Super Nomario

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The Packers reporting a profit of less than a million for the most recent fiscal year:

Expenses rose $56.3 MM ... they gave Rodgers a $57.5 MM signing bonus. And profits were only down $33.7 MM. So revenues were up ~$20 MM, it's just that it was a year where they had to redo the QB deal so that ate the profits. Next year, no new money for Rodgers, so expenses will go down again, and profits will probably look even better than 2017.

Basically, this is a nothingburger.
 

Cotillion

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Nah. They want it to cry poverty for the CBA negotiations. They got the headlines they wanted out of it from the AP.

It’s out there that the “Packers only made a million and had a huge drop in profits”. Most of the people the NFL wants on their side (fans) won’t think through the reasons as to why it happened. Only that the one public book NFL team was barely profitable.
 

Jimbodandy

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Nah. They want it to cry poverty for the CBA negotiations. They got the headlines they wanted out of it from the AP.

It’s out there that the “Packers only made a million and had a huge drop in profits”. Most of the people the NFL wants on their side (fans) won’t think through the reasons as to why it happened. Only that the one public book NFL team was barely profitable.
Hard to lose sleep over your "down" year being barely profitable. If worst case scenario for a team is break-even, that's an advertisement for the health of the league.
 

deanx0

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This is how you know those ownership stocks are scams--if they we real stocks that paid dividends based on performance, it would be their fiduciary responsibility to amortize the bonus--it would be poor accounting otherwise
 

ifmanis5

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Off to a great start. Three days of talks truncated down to one.
A source told ESPN's Josina Anderson that the meetings, which were originally scheduled to run through Friday, ended early because "there was information they needed to take back and discuss further with the other owners."