NFL, NFLPA Could Be in For a Fight Over Money this Season
Darin Alexander Baydoun
Earlier this week, the NFL proposed to the NFLPA a plan would have 35 percent of players' salaries be put into escrow in the preparation of lost revenue that the league expects to experience this season. The NFLPA's response to that request: For the league to go "kick rocks."
If that short negotiation made you a little concerned that the league and its players might soon be entering a standoff similar to what happened in baseball the past couple of months, well, there now could be more cause. A conversation he had with an NFL source regarding the league's negotiations with the union gave what fans could see as an ominous quote in a piece from Yahoo Sport's Charles Robinson.
"It's a major problem that isn't going away," the source said. "One way or the other, it's going to have to be bargained out [between the league and the union] if this is going to work." This…doesn't seem like it's going to go smoothly. If anything can be learned from MLB's negotiations with its players, it's that squabbling over money during a pandemic makes everyone look bad.
Combine this with how, as Robinson reports, players still have many misgivings and unanswered questions regarding the protocols that the league is putting in that intend to keep them safe; it seems that a clash between the two is all but inevitable. Unless one side quickly concedes, which is highly unlikely, these next few weeks before training camp begins on July 28 will serve as the most impactful period in the offseason that the league has had in recent memory.
We'll see how far the league will be willing to go to save money, and we'll also see if the NFLPA has the strength in its union to hold its ground on the level that the MLBPA did. For the league, though, considering that players are going to be risking the most by playing this season, it will be interesting to see how much criticism they'll be willing to take when/if this clash happens.
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