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Topic: Labor Negotiations: Goodell Offers To Take a Pay Cut
 Russ Bliss_108
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Post Date: 01/26/11 14:04
With the NFL labor agreement deadline coming up, I was encouraged to read NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell's comments about how he'll cut his salary from 10 million to 1 dollar if there is a work stoppage. I was equally impressed and encouraged by chief negotiator Jeff Pasch would also reduce his pay to 1 dollar in that event. Such a showing proves a commitment to working out a deal with the NFL Players Association and a confidence that an agreement will be made without any loss of games in the 2011 season.
 
 
However, I was discouraged by the reply by NFLPA communications director Carl Francis:
 
 
"I have been around long enough to know that this decision is irrelevant to the process. He should also guarantee there won't be a lockout."
 
 
I don't see it as "irrelevant" at all. Certainly it isn't relevant to the negotiations, but it shows a commitment on Goodell's part to getting something worked out. It means he is going to do everything he can to get this deal done. Everything within reason anyway.
 
 
Could it be just a PR spin by the NFL commissioner? Sure. It certainly looks good in the public eye that he is willing to go out on such a limb. It also reflects poorly on the player's union and their negotiators that they don't recognize how important it is to get a fair deal worked out.
 
 
I know that we as football fans don't go to games to see the owners. We pay the prices for seats and at the concession stands to see the NFL players play the game. But the players need to realize that the owners have every right to make money themselves since they are the one's signing the paychecks.
 
 
Goodell is showing the public, the NFL Fans, his faith in getting a new labor agreement done by making such a statement. The NFL Player's Union is showing the public and the NFL fans their indifference. Regardless of whether they really are indifferent or not, Francis's reply makes it harder for the fan to believe the union is as determined to get something done. The players union comes off as being rigid and uncompromising.
 
 
Granted, we have no access to what's really being discussed by both sides. We don't know what the real sticking points are. And we also don't know what was so bad about the last agreement that the owners chose this course of action instead of extending that agreement again. It seemed to work.
 
 
The only real issue I see as definitely needing to be corrected is the rookie salary structure. The top picks in the NFL draft make an obscene amount of money in their rookie contracts before they have ever played a down in the NFL. They should have to play a couple of years before getting such a reward. And the veterans who have proven themselves should get more money. Ad doesn't it make sense that the owners would be willing to pay more to the veterans if they could reel in these ridiculous rookie contracts? How can it be bad for the vast majority of the veteran players when it makes sense that their salaries would be increased?
 
 
But one thing lost in this is that it is only a few rookies each year who make these huge dollars. Pretty much if a player is drafted outside the top 10, they aren't getting the huge money. The salaries seem reasonable for mid-late first round picks and even more reasonable for those drafted after the first round.
 
 
There needs to be some common sense. There also needs to be a common sense of purpose from both sides. And right now, the fans see Goodell as being the good guy, while the union is coming off as the bad guy.
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On any given Sunday any fantasy team can beat another, only to still lose Monday night.
 Niner Flower Power_6
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Post Date: 01/26/11 15:16
Great points Russ and when I was heading back from the Fantasy Sports Trade Conference earlier today the "$1.00 a day" was being discussed at length on Sports Radio. I agree that the commissioner is doing all he can and its a show of good faith. He also received an e-mail from a Blogger on the east coast and actually called him back and talked with him for 15 minutes, about his concerns.
He's taking the right approach and representing the fans in a good way. Other points I brought up on the CBA/NFL Labor negotiations can be read here!
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 Throwball Heroes_118522
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Post Date: 01/27/11 16:50
Encouraging from the NFL side, I agree. PR, as you said quite possibly, but as a fan it does show that the NFL does not want a lock out. I am quite sure we will see mutiple "deadlines" come and go but in the end I think we will have a deal and there will be "next year."
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Stephen
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