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Eagles, Cowboys players authorize union decertification

Despite a report from PhillySportsDaily.com suggesting that Eagles players may vote against giving the NFLPA advance authorization to decertify as a union, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports that players from both the Eagles and the Cowboys have agreed to the approach.

The move could eventually be used to foil a lockout of the players.

The Redskins are expected to vote on the matter on Friday, Mort reports.  The Saints already have unanimously approved the measure.

Frankly, the question of whether the players will give NFLPA leadership the ability to utilize decertification if they deem decertification to be in the players’ best interests would be newsworthy only if the players had decided to say “no.”  Such a move arguably would represent a vote of no confidence in the leadership’s ability to make a prudent decision regarding whether a somewhat nuclear option should be used.

For now, the union has no plans to decertify.  “It’s important that everyone understands that we will be committed to
collective bargaining,” Attalah told ESPN.  “Negotiations
remain the best path to a fair and long-term deal.”

We agree.  So can someone explain to us why the two sides seem to be doing everything but, you know, negotiating?

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46 Responses to “Eagles, Cowboys players authorize union decertification”
  1. Strick says: Sep 17, 2010 9:28 AM

    “We agree. So can someone explain to us why the two sides seem to be doing everything but, you know, negotiating?”
    Yeah. Good point, Mike. All this crap is just so much legal wrangling. Common sense says that NO ONE wants a lockout.
    This reminds me of the cold war arms race. “We need to make more nukes so they’ll be too afraid to use theirs!”

  2. Patrian says: Sep 17, 2010 9:30 AM

    who cares if they lockout… I will pay more attention to baseball…
    I can actually afford good baseball seats.

  3. chargerrich says: Sep 17, 2010 9:42 AM

    The owners took risks, especially the older owners and their decendents who started this whole thing.
    The players did not take those same risks and they do not deserve any more money. Yes the players are the product and yes they risk their health but they are extremely well compensated for that.
    Look I dislike Jerry Jones and his ilk more than most, but the players are greedy, exemplified by the likes of VJax and Revis…
    I hope the owners do collude and shut it down if need be. These “stars” most of which (but not all) are ill equipped to be successful outside of sports would be flipping burgers without the stage given them by the NFL and their owners.
    Lets see if Revis Island can make his millions doing foot locker commericals…
    BTW, I hate you Freeman McNeil >

  4. bigbluefla says: Sep 17, 2010 9:46 AM

    Hey Patrian
    “I can actually afford good baseball seats.”
    you must not be a Yankees fan

  5. Drat says: Sep 17, 2010 9:46 AM

    This article may represent the worst writing ever from Florio. Too much of the Florio style: clause within a clause within a burrito. I cannot understand what the hell he is trying to convey, and I’m only moderately stoopid.

  6. mama tried says: Sep 17, 2010 9:49 AM

    Andy Reid wants to call a timeout.

  7. Hap says: Sep 17, 2010 9:52 AM

    Okay, I plead ignorance. I think I am right in assuming that this “decertification” move will cause all sorts of “PROBLEMS for Management”, right ? I think it means that potentially The NFL’s anti-trust exemption might be waived, and that would PISS off management BIGTIME.
    Sounds like we have a pissing match coming.
    Anybody know if I am right in my assessment of potential loss of anti-trust status?

  8. mbbrazi says: Sep 17, 2010 9:57 AM

    Every player should have to go out and find a job like a normal human being. Finding a job in itself is like having two full time jobs-if not more. And then after finding “work” have to work whatever job they find for one full year. This goes for all professional athletes NFL, NBA, NHL, Tennis players etc. I guarantee you that “ALL” of these players will play for far, far less than what they think they’re really worth. I understand fully that if someone is willing to pay an exorbitant fee for their services than of course who wouldn’t take it. But the reality is I dearly love football on all levels high school, college and of course the NFL. But Sam Bradford can’t even wipe his ass and he’s making tons more money than so many other deserving veterans. Do you honestly believe in your right mind that I give a shit about Darrelle Revis holding out especially when his next two years before the renegotiated contract had a guarantee paying him 10 million dollars for the next two years? Professional athletes should realize that in the real world football will survive without loudmouths and attitudes and that people fighting to put food on the table and pay rent don’t give a rat’s ass about whether or not professional athletes make more money to play a game I sneak out of work to play.

  9. Hauschild says: Sep 17, 2010 10:02 AM

    Strick:
    The only problem with your analogy is the fact America crushed the Soviets precisely because we made more nukes, essentially bankrupting the Commies.
    The fact remains, unions will be SOLELY responsible if a lockout occurs. Again, hate to bring up basic economics, but a frightening number of my fellow citizens don’t understand the principles: The players will receive what the market dictates. The owners will not pay more than the market dictates, or they soon would find themselves with no franchise.
    For God’s sakes people – look at France, Greece – you name it: Look at what happens when governments allow unions to dictate compensation, as opposed to the free market – holdouts, strikes, riots….
    I guess I’m floored at the lack of basic understanding of economics when I read anybody blaming owners for lockouts. It’s ridiculous and those that trumpet that cry are idiots.

  10. CaptainObvious says: Sep 17, 2010 10:02 AM

    “So can someone explain to us why the two sides seem to be doing everything but, you know, negotiating?”
    Because the owners already know the outcome.
    They -will- force a lockout. (But of course they’ll blame the union..)

  11. Whodey08 says: Sep 17, 2010 10:04 AM

    Actually I’d say the best thing fans can do is absolutely nothing.
    Threats of this or that will only embolden the league and the union.
    Now fan apathy @ losing football? That would quite possibly get attention.
    Nothing tells an athlete or league they are in trouble than nobody caring.
    To quote many race car drivers over ther years,
    ” I don’t care if fans cheer or boo me during introductions. It’s when fans say nothing that the sponsers start looking elsewhere.”

  12. Derrick says: Sep 17, 2010 10:21 AM

    anyone that runs a successful business will tell you, if you are paying your employees more than 52% of operating expenses, you are doomed to fail. Right now the players are 59%, that is not sustainable, that’s why the NFLPA is going to destroy the NFL unless that number is reduced to a more reasonable number to around 52%.

  13. JHig713 says: Sep 17, 2010 10:23 AM

    Andy Reid just called his second timeout.

  14. longestlegs says: Sep 17, 2010 10:25 AM

    Fans attitude of ‘the players make millions so shut up’ is so unbelievablt tiring.
    Who cares how much someone else makes? Let them make as much as they can. Let ANYONE make as much as they can with their skillset in life. Fans start yelling greed out of jealousy, plain and simple.
    Apathy is brought on by their own day to day struggles. Money doesn’t invalidate a player’s right to speak their minds, nor does it make them a diva, nor does it cause them to cease being human.
    Making more money than everyone else is what this country is all about; isn’t that the American way?

  15. Old School says: Sep 17, 2010 10:28 AM

    mbbrazi and Hauschild, you nailed it! There’s just one problem. The players, right down to the last guy on the practice squads are mental midgets. Like most union sorts, they are incapable of thinking for themselves, and must throw themselves on the mercy of the nerciless union bosses.
    The fans will have the last laugh on this one.

  16. RobF2010 says: Sep 17, 2010 10:41 AM

    This is brinkmanship without a brink. Both sides have had over a year to gear up for it. Neither side will hurt if they don’t come to agreement. The average fan doesn’t care what it’s about or who is at fault (Hint: The owners, the owners, the owners, the owners). The whole thing is ludicrous. There is plenty enough cash in that cow to go around.

  17. awdlmd says: Sep 17, 2010 10:44 AM

    “The owners took risks, especially the older owners and their decendents who started this whole thing.”
    I wouldn’t consider being born to a rich daddy with a pro sports team to be a huge risk (cough Mike Brown).
    The owners are going to kill the golden goose with their greed. They are not negotiating in good faith and are trying to intimidate the players (ie the ones that actually have to suit up and play on Sundays) into taking a drastic cut in their share.

  18. EasyDrinkingBuschLight says: Sep 17, 2010 10:47 AM

    The players aren’t the ones asking for more money, the owners are.

  19. RobF2010 says: Sep 17, 2010 10:52 AM

    To Derrick:
    Where did you get the 59% figure? Did you get a look at the books that the owners won’t show the union? It may very well be accurate but there is no way anyone should take the owners’ word for it.

  20. PFTiswhatitis says: Sep 17, 2010 10:53 AM

    Wouldnt the Union actually be risking a lot to decertify?

  21. LAEaglefan says: Sep 17, 2010 10:59 AM

    The fans who actually do pay the money to go to these games should teach the owners AND the players a good lesson….and just stay home! By forcing a lockout the owners are just spitting in the face of the very people who make all of this possible in the first place. They complain about players wanting to renegotiate and holding out with years left on their contracts, but that’s exactly what they did when they voided the final years of the contract with the NFLPA. Now, instead of all of the posturing and legal maneuvering, whey don’t the two sides just sit down and hammer this thing out with each other, put it all to rest, and play some football? I guess that’s far too logical to expect.

  22. CHIEF ZEE says: Sep 17, 2010 11:03 AM

    Rex Ryan wants a snack

  23. palewook says: Sep 17, 2010 11:05 AM

    smelling another long court case that ends in a 1 dollar judgment coming

  24. petro says: Sep 17, 2010 11:08 AM

    At the time of my post, Andy Reid called his 3rd and final timeout and it’s only 11:07 am EDT. Geez, the big guy’s lunch plans will surely be rushed. (And I’m an Eagles fan).

  25. longestlegs says: Sep 17, 2010 11:13 AM

    ESPN and other news outlets have reported that the share is 60%, which owners want to bump down to 50%.

  26. Patsfan1776 says: Sep 17, 2010 11:15 AM

    The owners and players really believe that the fans need the NFL like crackheads need crack. They are sadly mistaken and will find out when they go on strike/lockout/decertify etc.

  27. Insomniac says: Sep 17, 2010 11:38 AM

    If there is decertification, will the draft also be an antitrust issue?

  28. Shark839 says: Sep 17, 2010 11:41 AM

    “Look I dislike Jerry Jones and his ilk more than most, but the players are greedy, exemplified by the likes of VJax and Revis…”
    You may not like Jerry but if you want to talk about risk. He sunk ALL of his money into the Dallas Cowboys, while they were losing money.
    Does he deserve to reap the rewards now? Is that America?

  29. Steve W. says: Sep 17, 2010 11:42 AM

    @ Hauschild
    As someone who has an Economics degree, let me correct a couple of mistakes you made.
    1. The NFL isn’t a free market. If it were, there would be no draft (most starting employees can’t seek out their own employer), no salary cap or floor, no franchise tag, and certainly no restricted free agency. With all of these tools in place, the NFL functions more as a cartel (OPEC is an example of a cartel), in which a limited number of companies work together to control the market as much as possible. While Cartels do help to increase the profit margin of its members, they also create certain market failures and negative externalities. The only real way to deal with this issue is government regulation or cooperation amongst those they deal with. In this case the player’s union. Whether you like unions or not, they do serve a purpose. For instance, the labor safety laws never would have come about if not for unions. Having said that, not all unions are equal. In a situation like this, if both sides are rational and willing to compromise, both sides profit. If not, the market is thrown into disarray. Here’s hoping for some rationality.
    2. Your incorrect as to the real cause of the problems in France and Greece. I’ve studied the issue directly in several courses. In fact, one of my grad courses dealt with nothing but this issue. The issue isn’t unions, it’s the government. These countries are parliamentary in nature, meaning that instead of having two or three major political parties, they have many smaller parties. Each party has it’s own focus, and in order to put together a national ruling government, multiple parties must come together and form a coalition. This means that there are constant deals being made, as well as constant efforts to appease the people so as to garner as much support as possible for your coalition. The oldest, and still widely used approach in these places, is the old bread and circuses approach. The government mandates high pensions, some at relatively young ages. The higher pensions require more money per retiree to keep the programs afloat. Since the retirement ages tend to be lower than here in America, it also means that there are fewer workers to contribute to the pension fund. It also doesn’t help that the population in many western nations is shrinking, with the larger demographics being older individuals. America, by the way, is one of the few western nations with an increasing population. The native population is pretty much pinned at the restoration rate (enough kids to keep the population stable), with immigrants and their children (immigrants tend to have higher fertility rates for about two or three generations) making up the largest part of the population increase. For the other western nations, all of these factors put tremendous stress on public funds, and dramatically increases taxes and other deductions for workers. This in turn weakens the economy and creates instability within the currency. The only thing keeping some of these nations’ economies from collapsing is that some of the other nations (Germany for instance) still have strong economies, which has served to somewhat stabilize the Euro. The pressure put on these nations, however, has caused some problems for the stronger economies as well. It’s also created a fair amount of resentment between the more robust nations in the EU, and the ones that are hurting the currency.
    Well, given the length of this post, I hope you can see why I don’t normally like to break out the Economics-based explanations. Since you went down that path (and got a little off track), however, here’s my correction.

  30. Steve W. says: Sep 17, 2010 11:50 AM

    @ mbbrazi
    Do you realize the level of competition that exists for these pro sports jobs, or the amount of work required to successfully obtain them? Look, I think some of these salaries are ridiculous too, but saying it’s not real work is just ridiculous. Yes, they may be playing games that we also enjoy playing, but there’s a big difference between the effort we put in to have a little fun, and the work they have to put in to properly condition themselves to be able to do it professionally. Put simply, this is their job, the same as whatever you do is your job. The only difference is that their job is probably a lot harder to both get and keep.

  31. Krow says: Sep 17, 2010 11:51 AM

    A ‘union’ of millionaires is a joke anyway. Better to call it a yacht club… or a Porsche owners association. Stop stealing credibility from real unions.

  32. Creativefreak says: Sep 17, 2010 11:55 AM

    I realize business is business…but I’m sure the fans (you know, the people who make all this possible) have NO sympathy for hundreds of millionaires arguing about who gets more money! Seriously…figure it out, rub some dirt on it and get back in the game!

  33. contract says: Sep 17, 2010 12:01 PM

    “Again, hate to bring up basic economics, but a frightening number of my fellow citizens don’t understand the principles: The players will receive what the market dictates.”
    Hauschild: The owners don’t want to pay what the market dictates. That’s why the NFL has a college draft, restricted free agency and a salary cap.

  34. Steve W. says: Sep 17, 2010 12:17 PM

    There’s actually a fairly easy compromise to be found if both sides are willing to look for it. The owners are worried that the current revenue share is unsustainable, and the players are simply worried about not losing what they already have.
    How about this for a compromise? Do the expansion to 18 games that the owners want so that overall revenue will be increased. Then, move away from the revenue percentage model for this one cba and create a hybrid salary structure. Take last years numbers and use that as the base for the overall player salary. In other words, whatever 60% of this past years revenues were will be the allotted total salary for players in the first year of the cba. The players keep what they have, and the owners start out with the initial revenue boost that the switch to 18 regular season games would bring. Now, from this point, you peg the change in total player salary to the change in revenue. If revenue goes up by 3%, then the total player salary pool goes up by 3%. Both sides will benefit proportionally from any increased success of the league, but since the owners start out with more, their increase is greater. Of course, a new rookie salary structure would have to be included as well, but both sides are already willing to work together on that.
    You set up this cba as a seven year contract, with either side being able to void it after five years if it turns out to be too disadvantageous to either side.

  35. DikShuttle says: Sep 17, 2010 12:24 PM

    @ Strick – hey – it worked, didn’t it?

  36. J2ThaROC31 says: Sep 17, 2010 12:25 PM

    bigbluefla says:
    September 17, 2010 9:46 AM
    Hey Patrian
    “I can actually afford good baseball seats.”
    you must not be a Yankees fan

    Thank God.

  37. EverybodyGotAIDS says: Sep 17, 2010 12:33 PM

    Steve,
    Yes and no. The NFL operates as a cartel…to an extent. The NFL is the leading football league in the country (and world) because they were around first and were able to develop their fanbases. It’s a “chicken or the egg” scenario, to an extent. Why does the NFL have the best talent? Because they offer the most money. Why do they offer the most money? Because they have the highest revenue. Why do they have the highest revenue? Because they have the best talent. And so on it repeats.
    If the NFL shut down tomorrow, or better yet, decided not to deal with a union anymore (forget for a minute about the legal ramifications), and they figured “Hey, we’re going to pay our guys like regular working people. $60-70k/year for the average, and $120-150k/year for the stars”…another league would just come in and offer more. It really is a competitive market, and football players aren’t FORCED to play for the NFL. If the players feel like they don’t like it, or aren’t being paid enough, they are free to take their skills elsewhere, and if all the NFL’s stars decided to take their talents to the UFL…the UFL would become the top league in the country. The only reason you view it as a cartel is because the other leagues are SO FAR below what the NFL is, that it isn’t truly competitive. There is, however, a floor, and if the UFL gains popularity and, therefore, is able to increase salaries….you may see more players willing to go there. If a higher quality player is willing to go there….more people will watch…..they’ll make more money….pay their players more….and be able to attract a higher quality player. The cycle repeats. At some point, the NFL DOES need to operate as a competitive business if they let it get to that point. Just because it hasn’t happened yet doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen, and sooner than you think. A lockout (or strike) could do quite a bit to help the UFL and put them on the path to relative equality with the NFL. If the lockout (strike) were to go on for something ridiculous like 3-4 consecutive years, you could see that league (or the Arena league or, god forbid, the CFL, or another league entirely) surpass the NFL and become the new standard bearer.

  38. Scourge says: Sep 17, 2010 12:48 PM

    I think the NFL is doomed long-term.
    It’s a brutal sport, there’s only at most 20 to 24 games a year, including pre-season and post-season, stadiums don’t sell out all the time, players want big money and security, owners want control and big profits, the commissioner is a greedy expansionist moron who wants to go international, there’s no professional developmental league – only a no-frills college drafting program…
    Quality athletes have a better chance at a career in other sports like Baseball.
    As great as the NFL can be, it’s also its own worst enemy.

  39. edgy1957 says: Sep 17, 2010 12:52 PM

    chargerrich says: September 17, 2010 9:42 AM
    The owners took risks, especially the older owners and their decendents who started this whole thing.
    *********************
    So, you mean that the Chicago Bears, who were supposed to pay $100 to join the league but DIDN’T, took a lot of risk? Remember, when they formed the NFL, professional football was NOTHING and they paid their players NOTHING. The funny thing is that it took a PLAYER, Red Grange, to give the NFL the credibility to actually make money. Yes, that’s right, a PLAYER saved the league and it’s been the PLAYERS that have made it so that the owners can make money.

  40. EverybodyGotAIDS says: Sep 17, 2010 12:53 PM

    “How about this for a compromise? Do the expansion to 18 games that the owners want so that overall revenue will be increased. Then, move away from the revenue percentage model for this one cba and create a hybrid salary structure. Take last years numbers and use that as the base for the overall player salary. In other words, whatever 60% of this past years revenues were will be the allotted total salary for players in the first year of the cba. The players keep what they have, and the owners start out with the initial revenue boost that the switch to 18 regular season games would bring. Now, from this point, you peg the change in total player salary to the change in revenue. If revenue goes up by 3%, then the total player salary pool goes up by 3%. ”
    _____________
    Steve, basic math, dude. Basic math.
    How exactly is that different than saying that player salaries will account for 60% of revenue? If it’s 60% now…..and you peg it to revenue….if revenue were to go to 110% of what it is now…..that would mean the player salaries would go to 110% of what it is now…..110% of 60% is 66%…..66% is 6/10 of 110%. It’s the same thing. And you want to claim that you’re a grad student? Apparently math isn’t particularly important in economics.

  41. sportsbruh3 says: Sep 17, 2010 1:11 PM

    Steve W.
    You Da Man!

  42. edgy1957 says: Sep 17, 2010 1:17 PM

    Hauschild says:
    Strick:
    The only problem with your analogy is the fact America crushed the Soviets precisely because we
    ******************************
    Except that’s NOT true. What bankrupted the Soviets were all the arms and armor that they used in Afghanistan and having to replace them. Plus, they built MORE of anything that we had because they felt that since they couldn’t overwhelm us with technology, they would do it in shear numbers, which is why they had so many missiles, tanks, ships and submarines.
    As for the rest of your tripe: seriously, do you even have an idea of what this is about? When you say “The players will receive what the market dictates. The owners will not pay more than the market dictates, or they soon would find themselves with no franchise”, you’ve pretty much shown that you don’t. This isn’t about getting MORE from the owners, it’s about keeping what they have. The owners want them to give back more of the money that the PLAYERS are getting and if they’re not careful, it may go back to the pre-union days when the owners paid for a few uniform items but the players supplied their own helmets. The owners want money BACK from the union so they can build more palaces BUT they don’t want to share in that new found revenue, even though they will essentially get someone else to pay for their palace while they reap the rewards.
    You can talk free markets all you want but you’re NOT talking the NFL. There would be no way in hell that a group of like businesses in this country could get together and negotiate deals like the NFL without being hit by some kind of anti-trust law suit unless they have an anti-trust exemption like the NFL.
    How would you feel like if you came out of Harvard law and you got ONE and only one offer and you had to take it or leave it? Would YOU just be happy to be getting a job or would you go bag groceries because that’s what “the real people’ do? Why is it that YOU expect the players to give up rights that you’d fight to the death to have? The NFL and other sports leagues are unlike anything that YOU have to put up with in your life. Stop being jealous. Oh and I’ll leave your anti-union rant go because it’s obvious that you wouldn’t listen to reason when it comes to what they HAVE meant to you and your fellow employees.

  43. edgy1957 says: Sep 17, 2010 1:22 PM

    Amazing what 23 years can do. The Cowboys were one of the franchises that short-circuited everything in 1987 when they were shaky, at best, before it all happened and then when a few of their players came back after the second week of play.

  44. edgy1957 says: Sep 17, 2010 1:41 PM

    Shark839 says:
    You may not like Jerry but if you want to talk about risk. He sunk ALL of his money into the Dallas Cowboys, while they were losing money.
    *************************
    On what planet where you on when this happened? The Cowboys, even at 3-13, were one of the Top 5 teams in merchandising and their share of that paid a lot of bills. All teams also didn’t pay out as much of their salaries as they do NOW and there was no such thing as free agency (Plan B wouldn’t go into effect until 1989) AND the TV contract money DOUBLED, the year after he bought the Cowboys. The team WASN’T losing ANY MONEY and NO TEAM in the NFL at that time was.

  45. Steve W. says: Sep 17, 2010 2:03 PM

    @ everybodygotaids
    Because, the revenue has already increased from last year, and the increase to 18 regular season games would increase revenue even further. So, 60% of last year’s revenue would not be the same thing as 60% of next year’s revenue. That differential, in turn, would continue to grow as revenue increased. While it might not seem a tremendous initial differential, what we’re talking about here is a revenue stream. So, in this case the initial differential experiences a multiplicative effect in it’s growth.
    In other words, yes, mathematics is important to economists, we simply don’t ignore changes that occur over the years. Then again, looking back at it, it’s little more than a percentage readjustment (with the readjustment primarily coming from the increased revenue of expanding the regular season). Even then, it has a fatal flaw. It presupposes that they could make the contract alterations with the networks and ESPN before the new contract took effect. What the heck, I was half asleep when I came up with it anyway.

  46. EverybodyGotAIDS says: Sep 17, 2010 2:42 PM

    Steve, you can just say you’re wrong. It’s ok ;)
    Revenue has been growing (as far as I know) pretty much every year for the NFL, so the piece of pie given to owners and players is still growing, and yes, adding 2 games will add more revenue (maybe not a full 12.5%, but some portion – call it 5%), but your idea to peg player salaries to revenue as a way to NOT keep it as a set percentage of revenue was just moronic (no offense). The players and owners should come and agree that the players will receive 55% of revenue, or that the players and owners will receive a split of profits, rather than revenue (so operating expenses will already be taken out so if expenses were to rise for some reason, everyone would get the same piece of a proportionately smaller pie) and we can all get on with our lives.

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