NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith's tenure could be nearing its conclusion, according to ESPN's Dan Graziano.
On Tuesday night, the NFLPA's executive committee took a vote to determine whether Smith should remain in his position. According to the NFLPA's constitution, a unanimous approval vote by the 14-person committee would have kept Smith in the job. But the vote was evenly split at 7-7, according to ESPN.
Smith has held the job for the past 12 seasons. His job status is now in the hands of the NFLPA's 32-team player representatives, who will meet Friday evening to discuss the situation. As noted by ESPN, if 22 of the 32 player representatives vote to retain Smith then he would in effect be reelected and could begin negotiations on a new contract. If he does not receive 22 votes, however, the job of NFLPA executive director would be open, giving other candidates the option to run at the association's annual March meeting.
Smith was elected in 2009 and reelected in both 2012 and 2015. In 2017, the NFLPA's 14 selection committee voted unanimously to extend his contract
Smith negotiated the new collective bargaining agreement with the league and team owners that was ratified by a narrow vote, of 1,019 to 959, in March 2020. However, throughout the process, a number of the league's most prominent players, including Aaron Rodgers, J.J. Watt and Richard Sherman voiced their opposition to the deal, which among other factors, extended the regular season to 17 games
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