March 4, 2011

NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement

Filed under: Sports Law — Giorgio Varlaro @ 3:22 am

With the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NFL and its players set the end on March 3rd, things have started getting chippy between players and owners, causing the NFL and its owners to file an unfair labor practice charge against the player’s union on Monday (February 14th). The league alleges that the union has failed to bargain in good faith because it plans to decertify.

The player’s union, which has stated that they have not yet decertified, sought for approval of decertification from the players during the 2010 regular season. The players authorized the union to decertify if necessary. If the union chooses to decertify, it essentially puts them out of business as a negotiating body for players.

With the NFL filing an unfair labor charge and the union threatening to decertify, it looks as if both parties will be playing a cat and mouse game until a new agreement is established.

The filing by the NFL, which was expected by the union, is a procedural move intended to prevent decertification. The league doesn’t want the players to be able to decertify because then the players can file an antitrust charge against the league which could then avoid a lockout after the March 3rd deadline.

Arguments in the new collective bargaining agreement revolve around a new rookie salary cap, equal sharing of revenues between players and owners, a two-game increase of the regular season, and other formalities with salaries, insurance and retirement if the regular season is extended.

With the NFL and the players union seemingly to play games with each other, does this prove that there will be no NFL games played next season? Do you think that the owners are asking too much from the players? Do you believe that the owners, like the Packers should reveal how much money they’ve made with the signing of the last agreement? Will a lockout of the players hurt the NFL like it did the MLB in 1994?




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