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Union puts pressure on NFL’s sponsors

Though the return of football (at least the non-real version of it) has nudged the labor drama into the shadows, the problem continues to softly boil.

And with the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the league and the players due to expire in March 2011, the NFL Players Association has placed the NFL’s sponsors on notice.

According to Liz Mullen and Daniel Kaplan of SportsBusiness Journal, the union’s marketing arm has informed league sponsors that, with the expiration of the CBA, the ability to use the names and likenesses of the players will expire, too.

The current Sponsorship Agreement, which exists separate and apart from the CBA, expires on March 4, 2011.  As Mullen and Kaplan point out, the Sponsorship Agreement came eight long years after the current CBA was negotiated.

In theory, the Sponsorship Agreement could be renewed separately from the CBA.  But we doubt that the NFLPA would be interested in striking the sponsorship deal without also reaching a broader CBA agreement.  Instead, the union looks to be using the evaporation of the Sponsorship Agreement as leverage for a new labor deal.

The letter invites the NFL sponsors to negotiate with Players Inc. with an eye toward working out separate contracts, in the event the CBA and the Sponsorship Agreement expire.

So while the letter from the union is addressed to the NFL’s sponsors, the union seems to be letting the NFL know that the players are prepared for whatever may happen once the CBA goes away.

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4 Responses to “Union puts pressure on NFL’s sponsors”
  1. footballseason! says: Aug 16, 2010 6:45 PM

    This is a fight between billionaires and millionaires…every time someone mentions it, it just pi$$es me off! Join the real world of salaries/income for a while before you complain about how bad you have it! My PSL was 10K and tickets are over 2K each year. That isn’t even a weeks pay for most of them. Some of them earn it in minutes. The owners donate that for a walkathon without a blink of an eye…I don’t feel sorry for anybody but the fans, they are the real losers in this fight!

  2. tom coughlin's coat holder says: Aug 16, 2010 7:46 PM

    if the strike comes to end,why not refrain from hiring any football players to sell products for the sponsors who wre effected by this ploy.
    the problem for the players is the fact that corporations and give and take away at their liesure.this statagem cuts both ways.

  3. LightningLucci says: Aug 16, 2010 10:33 PM

    Come on Mike…we need the important details.
    Does this mean we won’t get Madden 2012?
    Or will EA somehow still sell it without the players names and likenesses and manage to call it yet another groundbreaking new “feature”?

  4. SoCal says: Aug 19, 2010 2:40 PM

    So let me get this straight…the players won’t be making any money because they’re not playing any football, but now the union won’t allow the players to make any money from football-related royalties either?

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