In a move that should come as little surprise to those who have been tracking the developments in the ongoing labor battle between the NFL and the players’ union, multiple sources tell us that the NFLPA actively is exploring the possibility of filing collusion charges against the league regarding an overall lack of spending in free agency.
The union has been consulting with numerous agents to obtain insights regarding whether a case should be pursued — and whether evidence exists to support such a claim.
Exhibit A very well could be the widespread use of letters by teams informing restricted free agents that their tender offers will be cut as of midnight on June 15. The Collective Bargaining Agreement doesn’t require the issuance of such warning letters, and we’re told that the text of the letters sent by various teams suggest a degree of coordination.
We’ve also heard from multiple sources that teams possibly were not more aggressive in the pursuit of restricted free agents due to concerns that they’d be dressed down at league meetings in March and May.
Whether that’s enough to prove collusion remains to be seen. At some point very soon, we’ll break down the various rules that would apply in the event that a collusion case is filed — and regarding the potential exposure the league would face if the union files collusion charges.
Or maybe it’s more accurate to say “when.”