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League denies responsibility for pro-owner comments

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If Commissioner Roger Goodell telephoning a Colts blogger who complained about Goodell’s conference call with Colts season-ticket holders didn’t prove that the NFL is paying close attention to — and possibly reacting to — anything and everything said about the league during the lockout, we’ve gotten without solicitation a comment from the league regarding the perception that league and/or team employees are posting pro-owner comments in the PFT comments section.

Here’s what we wrote in an item regarding Drew Magary’s observation that our initial story regarding a possible complete shutdown of the league drew a confusing number of remarks from readers who seem to be rooting for that outcome:  “Still, it’s shocking that so many people support shutting the league down, and it makes Magary — and us — wonder whether some of the pro-owner posts have been posted by some of the team and league employees who have a lot of free time on their hands right now.”

Said NFL spokesman Greg Aiello in response, via e-mail:  “Regarding the statement from your recent post, 1) the goal of the clubs is not to shut down the league.  It’s to get a fair agreement with the players.  2) I have not posted any comments on your site and do not know of any club or league employees that have done so.  If there is evidence otherwise, let me know. We most definitely have not tried as a league to influence comments on the site.”

Unfortunately, there’s no evidence to prove or disprove any suspicions regarding the identity of folks who are posting pro-owner comments.  Folks rarely post comments with their real names, and even when they do there’s no way of knowing whether it’s actually their real names.

And the truth is that nothing prevents anyone connected to the league or any of its teams from posting comments, even without a concerted effort to influence comments.  Given the extent to which both sides have tried to influence public opinion during the lockout, would it surprise anyone if folks on either side of this fight were presenting their views in the comments section of PFT and other websites, even if only to vent their frustrations?

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158 Responses to “League denies responsibility for pro-owner comments”
  1. commandercornpone says: May 12, 2011 8:16 PM

    the players and their media shills sure do post a lot of comments…

    i side with the owners against the players cause most players are jackasses and duh is waaaaambulance chaser.

    and i am much more of a bettor than a fan.

  2. flaccotoboldin says: May 12, 2011 8:19 PM

    Yeah I have that impression most of the time I read the comments now.

    Not only is there pro-owner sentiment (which I’m not suprised by), but you see a huge dominance in ratings for pro-owner comments, while anything that logically examines the issue gets rated down.

    if they have staff playing games with PFT, i think the NFL is more focused on titling the rating of posts than on making dummy posts, althoug hI’m sure there is some of that too

    This ruins online shopping too. You see something has a good rating, just to realize its a bot for the company rating it highly. Gross.

  3. joshuavkidd says: May 12, 2011 8:21 PM

    kind of insulting to me to suggest that the only reason I would post pro-league comments here is because i must be working for a club! I said it before and I’ll say it again, the players position makes zero sense, and that’s why I do not support them or the courts, just for the sake of getting the game started again.

  4. chapnastier says: May 12, 2011 8:22 PM

    So as usual you are told you have no evidence, which you don’t, yet you still decide it OK to ake a blurb about how anyone working for the owners could get on here and comment. At least you had the courage to admit that the NFLPA could be doing the same thing. I am pretty sure neither side is doing it though, but hey its a slow news period so why not, right?

    Disclaimer: I am not a paid employee of any NFL team or organization. I have no affiliation at all with the NFL or any of its companies.

  5. geo1113 says: May 12, 2011 8:25 PM

    Chester Pitts perhaps!

  6. texasphinsfan says: May 12, 2011 8:26 PM

    I’m pro-owners and have nothing to do with the league or any NFL teams. I just post this way because I feel the players make enough, my ticket prices are high enough, and i don’t think the players should be entitled to 50% of the profits unless they’ll pay 50% of the bills.

    I’ve also been posting on this site for years; not a made up commenter for this discussion.

  7. freddyfelder says: May 12, 2011 8:27 PM

    i work for the colts superbowl committee

  8. brownsfn says: May 12, 2011 8:28 PM

    This site is so pro player its not funny…try staying objective guys…sheeeeesh

  9. footballfanatic3431 says: May 12, 2011 8:30 PM

    My name is Nick C. I live in California. I’m a junior in college.

    I support the idea of the NFL shutting down in hopes that a long term CBA will come from it.

  10. straitalk says: May 12, 2011 8:30 PM

    It’s amazing how NFL spokesman Greg Aiello has responded so quickly considering he and his minions are not monitoring or espousing pro-owner opinions via blog the PPF website. Just a coincidence? Hell no. I stopped following the blog responses over three weeks ago in response to the obvious PR campaign waged thru your website by…, someone. PPF claiming to have not noticed this makes you them look just a culpable.

  11. eagleswin says: May 12, 2011 8:32 PM

    For the love of god, give it up already. Are we going to get a series of articles finding it miraculous that people still support the players and that there’s speculation that they are either being paid by the union or are related to the players?

    The people who support the owners position are usually able to articulate their reasons using logic.

    The people who support the players use rhetoric, mock, and generally fail to present a rational argument instead running on emotion.

    I still see plenty of player supporters posting about opening the books when that decoy has been fully debunked for weeks but that doesn’t deter the player supporters.

  12. saints25 says: May 12, 2011 8:33 PM

    honestly,If I’m the owners i’d shut it DOWN..Start a new league.Players play the game,The owners run the company…(real world stuff right there.)

  13. rad312 says: May 12, 2011 8:33 PM

    Hmm….you throw out a statement claiming your suspicion that the league and it’s employees are posting pro-owner opinions…..to which you cannot substantiate…..however when the league responds informing that such allegations are false your defense is you cannot substantiate their claims…..

    Way to play both sides of the argument.

    You and the idiot Magary generate headlines with baseline opinions and suspicions, and get rewarded with response from the NFL…..and then raise questions based on the response…..

    This is proof in point that if you throw enough crap against the wall you are bound create something, if nothing else garner attention.

    When I first starting reading the site I did so because I thought your insights were timely and without the slanted viewpoints that came with Mortenson, Clayton, and company…. I came to rely on Sheffter and PFT, no longer. Though I must admit your biased opinions and editorialized comments did get me to subscribe so that I could comment…….so I guess if true reporting isn’t paying the bills switch to sensationalization…..

  14. malthor says: May 12, 2011 8:35 PM

    I’ll tell you what, i don’t work for the league but I am completely, 100% on the owners side.

    The problem with the players is this, they do not understand that league revenues are DOWN!

    They are not going to get a raise while that is true, the question should be how much of a cut they’ll take and how much the owners will take since no one is going to be getting a raise.

    The players have not accepted this, until they do I won’t support them.

    I say lock the players out and replace em with scabs, we root for the uniform and team, not the players that was proven last time around.

  15. txchief says: May 12, 2011 8:38 PM

    I’m generally pro-league and pro-owner, and I have no affiliation with the league or any franchise beyond paying huge season ticket bills. The playas are mercenaries. The league and owners are the custodians of the game.

  16. dkeyser says: May 12, 2011 8:38 PM

    Cue the “I told you so” crowd… God forbid that not everyone sides with the players in this.

  17. freedomispopular says: May 12, 2011 8:38 PM

    Cue the comments from at least one moron that thinks we should be required to post all online comments non-anonymously.

  18. bsandcs says: May 12, 2011 8:38 PM

    mike you’re really starting to get insulting here. I have a different point of view from you, as do a lot of people however i am a 27 year old female with an architecture degree and not some hired NFL shill…rude.

    Maybe it’s because your articles are so clearly one sided all the time, that posters feel compelled to point out the other side of things since you won’t.

    i don’t feel like i should have to justify that i’m not hired by the league in order to post here.

  19. snowpea84 says: May 12, 2011 8:39 PM

    Wow. I have a another interpretation for you. The fans who have been paying attention to what is going on see what is happening and why its happening. And they see the players are at fault.
    I almost agree with the poster who finds it insulting that you think pro owner comments would have to be a sham. But I’m not insulted. If anything it speaks to your own ignorance and biases.

    Get it through your heads. The people paying attention side with the owners. It’s that simple. It’s not a conspiracy.

  20. changsteinelgamal says: May 12, 2011 8:40 PM

    I would think a site like this, that makes money from advertising, would have a good handle on its traffic, and at least have the tools to see whether or not the comments posted here are coming from, shall we say, suspicious sources.

    Man that was a long sentence.

  21. cincinnasti says: May 12, 2011 8:42 PM

    I can’t believe you guys are stupid enough to think you have that much of an influence over the minds of people who work with any of the 32 teams in the NFL.

  22. ckacv111 says: May 12, 2011 8:42 PM

    I came to confess, I was the second gunman on the grassy knoll…

  23. profootballwalk says: May 12, 2011 8:42 PM

    Wouldn’t surprise me in the least. Why would football fans take the owners side over their favorite players? Makes no sense.

  24. snowpea84 says: May 12, 2011 8:43 PM

    Actually, I am kind of mad, not insulted. This is ridiculous. I think people get what is coming to them when they give power to unions. That is, they get destroyed businesses and ruined economies. To follow the path of unions in this country is to follow the follow a trail of blighted sectors.

    Some people side with the players, and don’t seem to understand that it is the players who need the owners. So I would like to see the owners close up shop, and give people a harsh dose of reality. Lew them know their true worth to the world.

  25. klock77 says: May 12, 2011 8:45 PM

    Owners are worried about money and the long term stability/competitiveness of the league, while the players just want money to buy D Smith more stupid hats.

  26. palinforpresidentofnorthkorea says: May 12, 2011 8:46 PM

    I can answer for my votes and comments which have been mostly pro-owner.

    I don’t work for the league and have no contact with anyone from the league.

    When De Mo and the players stop doing stupid $hit like filing an anti-trust complaint that can TAKE YEARS to be decided, pin the owners in a darn if you do/darn if you don’t situation, then complain that the season might be shortened or postponed – well take a look in the mirror boys – it is your frickin’ fault that you decided not to negotiate.

    Can you dig it?

  27. jjay9 says: May 12, 2011 8:49 PM

    “I’m pro-owners and have nothing to do with the league or any NFL teams. I just post this way because I feel the players make enough, my ticket prices are high enough, and i don’t think the players should be entitled to 50% of the profits unless they’ll pay 50% of the bills.”

    —————–

    I totally agree. Let’s see the Dolphins players pitch in for the staff pay cuts or the Vikings players pitch in for a new stadium. Partners, right.

    This site is so pro-player, it isn’t even funny. Especially little Gregg Rosenthal. It is disgusting that this article was even written. Amazing that a majority of readers are pro player. We are interested in longterm stability of the NFL, not shortsighted gains of selfish players. The polls on this site support my view. The comments on this site support my view. The thumbs on this site support my view. It is the literal and figurative “minority” that are pro player. That and the morons that think Unions are good for anything. Talk about a group that treats people like slaves. Get a clue PFT. No matter how much of this crap you try to shovel. You are in the minority.

    Support the Owners if you want to support football in the future. Support the players if you are a shortsighted moron.

  28. sarcasticks says: May 12, 2011 8:49 PM

    I think it’s more logical that there are players who are independently putting in their two cent (sic) worth, and league/team employees doing the same, than some concerted, conspiratorial effort by either side to flood the comment board. But, if that were the case, wouldn’t these comments simply being individual people expressing their individual opinions? What’s wrong with that?

  29. tommyf15 says: May 12, 2011 8:49 PM

    I doubt Magary was being serious when he says the NFL planted posters.

    Frankly, if the NFL did hire such people, the posts would be a lot more sensible and articulate than a lot of the neandrathal stuff the pro-owner folks put up.

  30. eaglesfan290 says: May 12, 2011 8:50 PM

    Sounds very James Bond where is the proof, and why is it so hard to believe fans side with the Owners?

  31. grandpoopah says: May 12, 2011 8:52 PM

    More spin from the owners’ mouthpiece. Did you think he’d actually admit what is clear to anyone with more than half a brain? Logic and truth will never get in the way of Roger’s talking points.

  32. cincyrob says: May 12, 2011 8:53 PM

    i can’t understand why there is so much pro-owner setiment. of course i am a bengals fan. would it change your mind if your team’s owner was mike brown?

  33. dapell says: May 12, 2011 8:53 PM

    The sport with the strongest union, baseball, has little parity. Fans know that. It’s a boring, dying game, in large part because the union is so strong.

    The NFLPA’s vision of the NFL would have no free agency, no franchise tags, no draft, etc.

    Why is it so hard for you to realize why fans are mostly siding with the owners? Oh, and the owner’s at least made a fair offer at the 11th hour. The players are the one’s who made a mockery of our legal system by *decertifying* and suing. I’m shocked any fans can side with the players.

  34. tommyf15 says: May 12, 2011 8:53 PM

    texasphinsfan says:
    I’m pro-owners and have nothing to do with the league or any NFL teams. I just post this way because I feel the players make enough, my ticket prices are high enough, and i don’t think the players should be entitled to 50% of the profits unless they’ll pay 50% of the bills.

    I agree 100%, and the players are fighting for our cause.

    If Brady, Manning, Brees, etc win their anti-trust case, the owners won’t have to pay 50%. They’ll be allowed to pay as much or as little as they individually choose, since the salary caps and salary floors will be abolished.

  35. liquidgrammar says: May 12, 2011 8:55 PM

    I hate both sides! I’m for a complete shut down of the whole league!! I hope it implodes, nobody goes to the games, and they all end up in the poor house!! I’m rollin’ with the UFL!!!

  36. gorams55 says: May 12, 2011 8:57 PM

    i am extremely pro union and having been around it for a very long time, and i can see that unions are necessary to keep most businesses from bending the average employee over the barrel to get a higher bonus check for their executives.

    But because of the idiotic way the nflpa has conducted itself since de smith has taken over, i find myself routing not for the owners but against the nflpa.

    They have been giving unions a bad name, and let me tell you most presidents go from the background of union member, to union rep, to union exec for a reason, its so that when they become president they know what they are doing

  37. commoncents says: May 12, 2011 8:59 PM

    I don’t work for the NFL and nobody loves football more than I do, but I side with the owners. Negotiate PA, and stop posturing!! The owners want football, why wouldn’t they?? They just want a deal done, and the PA won’t negotiate, instead they run to the shadows of the court system. If the players want to play, then negotiate.

  38. waccoforflacco says: May 12, 2011 9:00 PM

    I hope the players lose their a$$es and all their diamond stud earings AND their SUVS with their super duper chrome wheels.

    Most of these Pacman and Plaxico and Brandon Marshall types belong in jail and NOT in the NFL.

    GO OWNERS

  39. bworacle says: May 12, 2011 9:00 PM

    YOU OWE US A BIG-TIME APOLOGY.

    To insult your loyal fans with a posting of this nature is completely absurd.

    I have been a dedicated follower of this site for the 2 plus years.

    True, I only signed up for posting recently but only because your site focused too much on the player’s side that I felt compelled to answer.

    The reason we are posting “pro-owner” comments is because we are seriously concerned about the future of the sport we love if the players should win an anti-trust judgment against the NFL. Whether the players all believe it is in their best interest to eliminate the draft, free agency, etc. or not, if the NFL loses than as a matter of law these things will come to pass whether the players want them or not.

    Get a grip and show some support for loyal fans.

  40. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 9:03 PM

    The baffling part to me isn’t the amount of support for the owners, it’s the intellectual inconsistency in the arguments used to support them. Up until decertification, any time a player threatened to hold out or did anything else that didn’t correspond to complete fealty to a team, the same people who support the owners now would go on a rant about how evil the union is and how it should be destroyed. The players decertify the union, which puts the owners in a bad position when it comes to litigation, and now the same people are claiming the players can’t do that, and that it’s a sham simply because it helps their position. Btw, would someone please explain to me where in the constitution (or any other part of the law) that it says that our right to make decisions is limited to things that can’t benefit us in any way? Besides, does anyone really believe that the owners didn’t lockout the players because they felt it benefited them to deny the players their income? By the same argument, the lockout is also a sham. Of course, I’ve yet to see too much concern over intellectual integrity in most of these pro-owner arguments. I’ve posted a number of comments pointing out the inconsistencies of some of the pro-owner arguments, as well as the new legal precedents that would be set if the owners’ argument was agreed to by the appeals court (hint, it would vastly increase the power of unions in general). They’ve generated a number of thumbs down clicks, but I’ve yet to see anything approaching a cogent counter-argument.

  41. cscfriarbob says: May 12, 2011 9:06 PM

    “Given the extent to which both sides have tried to influence public opinion during the lockout, would it surprise anyone if folks on either side of this fight were presenting their views in the comments section of PFT and other websites, even if only to vent their frustrations?”

    Given the extent to which MF is obviously frustrated with declining site hits and lack of topics to talk about, would it surprise anyone if he was foolish enough to insult his remaining loyal readers, even if only to vent his frustration?

  42. pltn2089 says: May 12, 2011 9:06 PM

    The fact of the matter is, why would anyone doubt the the Owner would not do something like that. If everyone looked at the facts, the owners choose to terminate the last CBA. Both the owner and players had close to 3 years to do a new deal.

    They dragged their feet with posturing, grandstanding, and now here we are. Fault lies with both, but I believe more so with the owners. My opinion. Not saying the player should get the majority of the revenue, but they are the one’s playing the game, they are the one’s we cheer or boo. When an owner is on the field playing the game, I’m might be incline to be more sympathic.

  43. tommyf15 says: May 12, 2011 9:07 PM

    dapell says:
    The sport with the strongest union, baseball, has little parity. Fans know that. It’s a boring, dying game, in large part because the union is so strong.

    RIGHT! (rolls eyes)

    I’ve been hearing about baseball “dying” since the players were granted a system of free agency 36 years ago.

    Meanwhile, baseball collected $7 BILLION in revenues last year, which is more than double of the amount from eight years ago. The total worth of the 30 MLB teams is worth more than twice what they were worth in 1999.

    Some dying industry!

  44. canuck54143 says: May 12, 2011 9:08 PM

    As a bears fan I should side with the players since it could benefit the bears to have no cap no draft no player restrictions, but I’m also a football fan that doesn’t want my teetsam to just buy a championship. I want small market teams to have a chance to win. The best part of the NFL is that small markets like green bay, kc, and Buffalo have a chance. I used to love baseball until it became the halves and have nots

  45. thefiesty1 says: May 12, 2011 9:09 PM

    The hell with a long term CBA. Shut it all down. All contracts are null and void and then start over dealing with individual players. Unions Suck!

  46. firstroyal says: May 12, 2011 9:09 PM

    Actually you may be onto something. I have 20 followers on my blog- all are pro-owners! Conspiracy!!! And while we are on the subject my tin foil hat is a bit beat up- do you all have any extra ones i can borrow?

  47. massappeal12345 says: May 12, 2011 9:09 PM

    Lets see.
    32 owners
    1500-2000 players
    Web site with new PTLive guest slots to fill.

    Of course this web site is going to slant articles like this toward the players. You can’t afford to be blackballed by the them.

    I have no affiliation with either side.

  48. toiletking says: May 12, 2011 9:10 PM

    And I thought you were all just a bunch of ignorant white trash who like the thought of billionaires getting richer. Hell, that’s the tax structure you all vote for, right?

  49. detroitexile says: May 12, 2011 9:11 PM

    gorams55 – DeMauice Smith is the executive director of the former NFLPA, their lawyer. Kevin Mawae was President.

    And for what it’s worth, I’m sure there are people who support the owners for honest reasons. They’re wrong, but they’re probably not paid plants. My question for them is this: Do you tune in on Sunday to watch the action in the owner’s box or on the field?

  50. seabike1234 says: May 12, 2011 9:13 PM

    Owners don’t need to comment on this blog as they have 100X the marketing strength of the NFLPA.

  51. thetooloftools says: May 12, 2011 9:20 PM

    Of coarse the NFL owners are monitoring media… that is why PFT rips some really great posts off this website critical of the owners.
    Kid yourself not us.
    PLEASE

  52. blackheld says: May 12, 2011 9:20 PM

    You know, as far as I’m concerned, why not shut down the comments section of PFT entirely, til there’s football again. Most of the comments here are grammatically poor, full of misspellings, and normally exhibit a level of ignorance in their content that makes De Smith actually look like a smart, well educated and informed union leader, Jeffrey Kessler a realistic, down to earth legal representative, and Roger Goodell a frank, even handed representative of football.

    I read PFT for the posts, not for the stupidity found in the comments section. Close off the comments entirely, and I guarantee you the only readers you’ll lose are the ones dumb enough to think they have something to say worth reading.

    Admitted, this might be a large percentage, but hey…just sayin…

  53. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 9:23 PM

    saints25 says: May 12, 2011 8:33 PM

    honestly,If I’m the owners i’d shut it DOWN..Start a new league.Players play the game,The owners run the company…(real world stuff right there.)
    ______________________
    Well then, it’s a good thing you’re not one of the owners. You’d be running your team either from the poor house or jail. The owners are trying to claim that decertification is a sham. If the appeals court rules against the league and they “shut down the league” they’d better be very careful to make it a complete and utter shutdown, or the courts could find that their shutdown is a sham and find them guilty of contempt of court.

    Additionally, the owners have individually negotiated contracts with the players, as well as deals with various networks and cable companies, suppliers, advertisers, sponsors, etc. Shutting down the league would leave them open to countless breach of contract lawsuits from every side. Then there’s the fact that they will have severely ticked off the local and state governments who have invested several hundred million dollars (billions when taken together) to help finance a number of stadiums. If you think they can just shut down the NFL and open up for business again under another name, you’re out of your mind.

    Shutting down the league would do nothing more than to turn a collection of billion dollar franchises into a collection of companies that generate no product and whose primary capitol consists of real estate with seriously limited use. That’s why word was leaked to Mort so quickly that a shutdown was absolutely not a consideration. While I have no problem believing the owners would sacrifice this season if their lockout is upheld in order to break the players and force a bad deal down their throats, I find it rather difficult to believe that they would destroy their billion dollar properties simply to spite the players.

  54. massappeal12345 says: May 12, 2011 9:23 PM

    If the players win, maybe we can have a Lebron James style game show, to find out which team our former favorite players decide to grace.

  55. straitalk says: May 12, 2011 9:24 PM

    The reality is whether you are pro-owner or pro-player, if you were real football fans you would be pro start the season asap regardless of whose ox got gored. Instead, we hear from football fans without football ‘only concerned about the long term welfare of the game they love’! Give us a break. You are shills, plain and simple, and any real football fan, whether for the owners or players, understand that.

  56. bluvayner says: May 12, 2011 9:25 PM

    I imagine that people who are employed by the league, and the teams, read this site. I also imagine that they have actual opinions of their own, that are as valid, or more valid than yours or mine. They are entitled to state their personal opinions, plus they have an inside perspective that most of us lack. It doesn’t make them shills, if it’s their honest opinion.

  57. snowpea84 says: May 12, 2011 9:25 PM

    I can say right now that I come on here everyday and either post, or at the very least rate others comments. It seems like the only way I have to let the players, and the owners, know where as a fan, I stand.
    I want to let the owners know that I am ok with them doing whatever it takes. So I come here, and I post, and I rate. And then since enough people feel the same way, the pro player site that this is accuses every one of us of being plants.

    If this keeps up I’ll try and make my opinion show another way. By not frequenting this site.

    I am glad to know they see how much support they have here though.

  58. jtfris says: May 12, 2011 9:26 PM

    We r not sheeple. We know the union will wreck competitive balance. The owners won’t.

  59. FinFan68 says: May 12, 2011 9:27 PM

    It’s amazing how the pro-player crowd cannot fathom that there is actually a bonafide differing opinion from actual fans. Many “pro owner” comments put forward a logical argument that the players’ actions are detrimental to the future of the league. (there are idiots that spew stupid crap from both sides of the argument) I have sided with the owners’ point of view overall but there are many positions the league has taken that I do not agree with. (18 game season, European expansion push, “lockout fund”–if the players were to be denied their negotiated percentage of that revenue–to name a few) While there is likely some element of pro-management commenters that evolved after the labor strife started, the same can be said for many posters who are so pro-union that they can’t even articulate what the issues actually are and instead parrot bumper sticker mantras with little, if any, justification. Why are these posters not singled out as “shills”? Although I believe that PFT has attempted to remain neutral, the simple fact that this site would benefit from the lifting of the lockout (and all that goes with it) makes it apparant in the descriptions of the various events/viewpoints that true objectivity has been lost.

    The fact that this site has had two posts that have belittled a significant portion of its membership is insulting to those of us who have been here for quite some time.

  60. smacklayer says: May 12, 2011 9:28 PM

    Aren’t their 1900 players unemployed right now? how many NFL employees are there? I think a bunch of bored locked out players would do more to tilt the tables here. But the fac tis that no one except MF and us football addicted freaks cares about this site. Players don’t care, NFL owners don’t care, NFL employees don’t care.

    Fans are WAY too emotional.

  61. nflfan101 says: May 12, 2011 9:32 PM

    Wow! Those of us who want D. Smith to get his butt in negotiations and for a fair settlement are really getting to PFT.

    Otherwise, why would PFT attack us twice in the same day? Why would PFT want to shut us up?

    PFT inwardly knows that we are right, but they don’t like it and they don’t have any legitimate arguments in favor of D. Smith.

    In court, it is a common tactic. If you really do not have a defense, then you attack the other party personally and/or the party’s lawyer. Here, PFT cannot defend their favorite son, D. Smith. So they attack those of us who believe that a negotiated settlement is best for the NFL and who believe that D. Smith caused this whole mess.

    PS. No, I am not paid by the NFL and I do not make a nickle off of football. However, I do think for myself and I can see that this mess was caused by D. Smith.

  62. sakatak says: May 12, 2011 9:33 PM

    @gorams55
    Thank you for telling it like it is.

  63. skins359 says: May 12, 2011 9:33 PM

    I wouldn’t doubt that it’s happened on a site or two, it’s not like we’re talking about illuminati type conspiracies but rather ambitious marketing directors/interns/etc that may or may not be directed by owners.

    Oh yeah by the way, the players are being cruel and we need to support the owners. The ones that have given so much to charity and brought football to the masses. Let’s support them and back them as we…umm they lockout the players and put them in their place. Because remember football is a safe game that puts no one in jepordy and we…er they are loosing money and it’s not fair while these players pretend to wear ice packs and get fake surgeries to get work off.

  64. thefactor51 says: May 12, 2011 9:39 PM

    As a player it is hard to see why the NFL is the number one sport with all the player bashing and hating that goes on in these comments. Then dont watch then. If you dont go to the game someone else will buy your ticket. Stop comparing other jobs to the NFL. Your job is not like ours. You have never played in the NFL, you probably have never worked as hard as most of the players in the league. The owners do not take all the risk. From a guy who has had a major surgery after doctors tell me I will never play again. That is a risk the owner definitely is not taking. Who is writing the checks to these players? Is it the players fault the Redskins gave all that money to haynesworth or Oakland to Demarcus. Are you seriously mad at a player because his agent tells him I think I can get you x amount of dollars and the owners agree to it. The market sets a players value. I’m tired of getting lumped together with all these idiots who make ludacris comments and do stupid stuff to give the rest of us a bad name. I guarantee the players want to play way worse than any of the fans want us to play. We have a lot more to lose from money to time invested than the guy who is mad he doesnt have an excuse to drink beer a few days of the week. I’m just a hard working guy who is trying to live out his dream. Why do I have to get bashed for that. I am very grateful for the opportunity that I have been given to play in this league at the same time I have worked very hard to get to this point and I feel I have earned everything I have received. I am very aware that I can’t make this kind of money doing anything else. (i do have a college degree by the way in Business) That is why the motto is to make as much money as you can while you are in because when you are out you are out. The teams and owners dont care about the players. They use them for what they can get and then they find the next one. I just think it is laughable that among smart people (owners) or at least people who claim to be smart business men can’t find a way to get a deal done. I want football more that you do and I know you can’t prove me otherwise.

  65. duncancaper51 says: May 12, 2011 9:40 PM

    The fact that you felt the need to follow up on the pathetic post from earlier is final proof of the true dillusion of your point of view. People actually reading and rating these posts simply don’t agree with you. There’s no conspiracy. Enough of this crazy non-sense

  66. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 9:43 PM

    malthor says: May 12, 2011 8:35 PM

    I’ll tell you what, i don’t work for the league but I am completely, 100% on the owners side.

    The problem with the players is this, they do not understand that league revenues are DOWN!

    They are not going to get a raise while that is true, the question should be how much of a cut they’ll take and how much the owners will take since no one is going to be getting a raise.

    The players have not accepted this, until they do I won’t support them.

    I say lock the players out and replace em with scabs, we root for the uniform and team, not the players that was proven last time around.
    _____________________________
    You want to back that one up buddy? According to the numbers, league REVENUE has never been higher. It’s league profit that the owners are claiming has taken a hit, and that is due to investments in new stadiums and other league costs. That’s why the league is asking for an additional billion dollars off the top before the other revenue is split up between the owners and the players. So, before you make such an emphatic statement, you might want to do a little more research, because you just ruined your own argument in the very beginning by pegging it to something that is demonstrably false.

    As for scab football, that’s all you. While I root for my team first and foremost, I don’t just watch football, I watch the NFL The NFL is not generic football, it’s football played at an elite level. If I (and millions of others) didn’t care about the level of play, we’d be CFL, UFL, or AFL fans since we could watch the same game for a lot less money. Besides, as I pointed out before, bringing in scabs to play would only put them in even more legal trouble. The owners still have legally binding contracts with two-thirds of the players in the league. Those contracts are in limbo right now because the payouts are based on the league year. If they started playing games with scabs, however, it would start the league year and those contracts would be reactivated. Sure, they could simply cut the players without any guaranteed money left in their contracts, but that still leaves quite a lot of guaranteed money that they’d have to pay out or be in breach of contract over. So, they’d have to pay out all of that guaranteed money, as well as any punitive damages the court awarded. I also doubt that such a move would endear the league to the networks that pay such an obscene amount of money for airing rights. Since that’s the largest part of league revenue, it wouldn’t be all that smart to go out of their way to anger the networks.

  67. bucngator says: May 12, 2011 9:43 PM

    If need be….. I’ll make my name, address and phone # available, to prove no affiliation with the NFL. Sure, I own my own business and naturally side with management to a degree. But what I’d really like to see, is a deal that can sustain the contentment of both parties for MANY years to come. The players are not interested in anything of the sort…. they want it all, and they want it now and they want the courts to side with them in the process, forcing the owners into a situation where they violate the law, by simply opening the doors!! If shutting down the league is necessary to “keep the competetive balance”…… shut it down!!

  68. smacklayer says: May 12, 2011 9:46 PM

    One thing I have noticed is that pro player comments tent to be of the personal attack nature, i.e. “owners are greedy”, “8th circuit judges are republican shills paid off by the NFL”, “F Goodell”, “they’re screwing the fans”, and the like.

    Most pro league posts are rational, give good explanations for why they came to their conclusions, support long term health of the league, and give pertinent examples.

    The problem is that there is no defense for why the players are doing this. No one can defend it. I have not heard one player, player rep, NFLPA spokesperson, Debag Smith, etc. offer any kind of logical defense on why they are doing this. Everyone knows, including the players, that what they doing with the law suits is wrong. They obviously can’t back out of it now, but I have a feeling that many players wish it go down this road. There is no win here for the players.

  69. nyfootballgiants says: May 12, 2011 9:51 PM

    This might be the most arrogant theory I have ever read on these pages.

    I am a ny giants season ticket holder, who works in technology. I have nothing to do with the NFL, other than my love of football. If you doubt this, please feel free to reach out to me, as I am sure you have access to our login info.

    I support the league, and not the players. At the end of the day, I do not think the players deserve 50 percent of the revenue. The owners are the only ones taking the financial risks. In a tough year, they can lose money. The players do not have that risk.

    As far as the fact that the average player only plays 3-4 seasons? No one says that if you play football, you are exempt from working after your playing days are over.

    I also find it ridiculous that not only can the players choose to not negotiate, but they can go through this sham decertification to they and get what they want through the courts. If the players chose to strike the owners would have no similar option available to them.

    Personally, I think the owners should call the players bluff. No more salary cap, no salary floor. No draft, all free agents. No revenue sharing, etc. This will lead to teams going out of business, less jobs for players, and only the top players would make $. Everyone else would see their salaries drop.

    That’s what I think – and please feel free to contact me.

  70. crackbubba says: May 12, 2011 9:54 PM

    I see no reason to side with either side, but if any side has a point it’s the players. They only have 10-15 years to make money. The owners in general make several hundred million a year, and they do it for much longer. And their livelyhood is not on the line every day of every year. One broken bone can derail a player’s career, whereas an owner can break 206 bones and still collect his money. If the players are at any fault here it is for entering the pissing contest, and not just getting down to business.

  71. ravensfan4life52 says: May 12, 2011 9:55 PM

    I’m kind of insulted. most educated fans that i know personally agree with the owners. I don’t want the league to shutdown, but if it happens then i’m ok with that. the players are greedy, childish, and stupid. at this point I want them to lose money out of spite for causing all of this BS.

  72. footballrealist says: May 12, 2011 9:56 PM

    WOW!!! So we are all plants? spare me.

    We can accept that Bill Gates is filthy rich and getting richer. American culture applauds Mark Zuckerberg for making more money than he can count. No-one is saying ‘hey..we made you rich…give us some of your pie’

    The owners bought an NFL franchise. We accept that they are supposed to be ridiculously rich. They were either born into it, or had the brains and took the risks, and built an empire. We respect and admire that.

    I also respect and admire a guy who trains to run his fastest, or lift ridiculous weight, or react in a fraction of a second. BUT…the players get paid MILLIONS to play football. I repeat to PLAY football.

    A rookie at the bottom of a roster makes $285,000. If he sticks around for 1 full year his pay jumps to $360,000 without even accomplishing anything beyond staying on the team.

    The MAXIMUM that a US Chief of Police makes is $113,000….that is the top guy. The top 5 players in the NFL are making $14- 16 Million!!

    The owners are NOT only out for themselves (ie. Ralph Wilson out for himself) the NFL is what it is because men with vision realized that if they compromised a bit of short term gain, they could create more profit for EVERYONE!

    Revenue sharing ensures 32 teams being able to compete; which means more compelling games, diversified fan bases, ultimately increased revenue. Owners who were hauling in more cash than other guys had to agree to accept less for the health of the league. The draft ensures teams have a chance to rebuild. Owners agreed to a system that ensured a healthy league. Salary caps prevent wealthy teams from buying up the top free agents to create dynasties. Yes this also prevents salaries from escalating out of control…but…the guys who had the cash to buy all the free agents AGREED to NOT do it…for the betterment of the league.

    The fact that players get 50% of all revenue is MORE than fair. I haven’t seen anything written on how the players ‘trade association’plans to re-invest their increased share of the revenue into the league. What is it that they are asking for that is supposed to make the league better? healthier? How about the players take some of their money and create a College of Professional Football Players and police their ranks? Are they asking for more money to improve people’s lives? How about NFL Player Association funded CHILD SUPPORT programs that pay to educate some of the kids that some of their ranks won’t take responsibility for? How about negotiating with the league to ensure that the retired players who built the league are compensated now that it is a cash cow? All I hear about is how the players want to see the books, and want to be treated like partners, and want more money.

    I am not affiliated with the NFL I any way whatsoever. I am a father with 2 sons who play community football. I have coached at various levels since my playing days ended 25 years ago. I have been the Head Coach of a High School team for 16 years. I LOVE the game of football.

    And if my son played in the NFL making $2-3 million, and told that he wanted more than the 50% he and his teammates were getting? I would tell him to thank God that he was GIVEN the talent, was GIVEN the coaching, and GIVEN the opportunity to work hard and be rewarded with riches beyond most people’s imaginations to play a game that many of us would have, and many before him did play for so much less.

    Personally I hope that the players clue in to the disconnect between them and the rest of society and get back to the table and accept a FAIR deal…even if it isn’t squeezing every possible cent out of the league….but if not I hope the judges rule that the NFL can in fact operate as one entity…because they have already demonstrated symbiotic operations…and that the players lose their leverage and are forced back to the table hat in hands.

    In the end, I trust the owners to keep the Golden Goose alive and laying eggs, more than I trust the players.

  73. santolonius says: May 12, 2011 9:58 PM

    i was once surprised by the number of pro owner comments, but i have come to attribute that to the tea party world we live in, rather than to league employees posting on here. i’m more pro player, but i am very interested in hearing pro owner points of view, especially when they are thought out and not just a bunch of aggressive top blowing.

  74. fatguystrangler says: May 12, 2011 10:02 PM

    It’s bad enough that if (sometimes) one post’s an opinion on a story, that they’ll torn apart by fellow posters for not giving a full disclosure of their fav team/player, etc. It’s like people think there’s got to be an agenda or angle on why one posts what they do, when it could just be trying to make an opinion or start a, God forbade, discussion. But, now this comes out? Wow, unreal! Newsflash to PFT, mark me down as pro-owner (as I’ve said previously), but NOT a paid employee of the league or any team. I wish that was the case, just a football fan who’s capable of formulating his own opinion, and justifying why.

    I’ve seen some comments on this thread regarding getting rid of the comments section. Yeah, it’s true there are plenty of posts written in text speak and with horrible grammar/punctuation/spelling. That’s true for any online forum. (Go check out Yahoo! Oil and Gas stories to see some non-sensical raving lunatics who can’t spell or type, or frankly any Yahoo! story). There’s plenty of differing opinions that are actually legible and articulate on here, as well. Which is why I think is awesome football website and resource (most times).

  75. skins359 says: May 12, 2011 10:07 PM

    The players can always loose money. For starters unlike the other 3 leagues most of their money isn’t guranteed and can be cut to save money“`. On top of that the NHL is making money while giving 57% to the players. I seriously doubt that the NFL is loosing money with 53% going to the players. Plus if anything else the NFL is proving to be recession proof. Owners are actually raising prices.

  76. footballrealist says: May 12, 2011 10:09 PM

    santolonius

    well said and articulated!

  77. jlinatl says: May 12, 2011 10:13 PM

    If there are owner “plants” in here, it will come out in time. It seems a bit far fetched that the same people that are probably very uncomfortable that there jobs will still be there in 30 or 60 days would be trusted to post pro-owner comments and not say anything if they were to lose their jobs.

    Of course, that doesn’t make it impossible.

    However, what seems just as likely that pro-player advocates, or the NFLPA* is trying to go on the offensive with these claims to try to stir the passion of what they hope is the silent majority. If that is the case, I think they have misjudged the majority.

    All that being said, I wish they would all grow the hell up, sit down, negotiate as professionals, muzzle the attorneys, and come to a long term agreement that both sides can live with but that neither side feels like they lost completely.

  78. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 10:13 PM

    nflfan101 says: May 12, 2011 9:32 PM

    Wow! Those of us who want D. Smith to get his butt in negotiations and for a fair settlement are really getting to PFT.

    Otherwise, why would PFT attack us twice in the same day? Why would PFT want to shut us up?

    PFT inwardly knows that we are right, but they don’t like it and they don’t have any legitimate arguments in favor of D. Smith.

    In court, it is a common tactic. If you really do not have a defense, then you attack the other party personally and/or the party’s lawyer. Here, PFT cannot defend their favorite son, D. Smith. So they attack those of us who believe that a negotiated settlement is best for the NFL and who believe that D. Smith caused this whole mess.

    PS. No, I am not paid by the NFL and I do not make a nickle off of football. However, I do think for myself and I can see that this mess was caused by D. Smith.
    ______________________
    Actually, in court it’s the owners that don’t have much of a defense, which is why they don’t want the case in court. Think about it, how can they realistically claim that the teams aren’t working together to dominate the market and artificially control prices, costs, and the freedom of movement of the players? That’s exactly what the league was formed to do, and those practices violate anti-trust laws. They haven’t had to deal with that in the past because the league had anti-trust exemptions stemming from the existence of a players’ union and a collectively bargained agreement that settled any issues pertaining to the relationship between the players and the league. With no more cba and the union decertified, the league is finally left vulnerable to the very conditions that have made them so successful. That is why they’re claiming decertification is a sham. There is no legal precedent that says a union can’t decertify because it’s in the best interest of the workers (in fact, one would assume that the only reason a union would decertify is because it was in the best interest of the members to do so). The league is claiming decertification is a sham because they need for the union to exist a lot more than the players do. Quite simply, the owners need the anti-trust exemptions that an active players’ union provides them.

  79. whatevnfl says: May 12, 2011 10:14 PM

    I would think club and league employees would ultimately be supporting a lifting of the lockout and getting back to football so they can start collecting their full paychecks again. Not posting wildly on a stupid message board trying to sway public support for the people cutting their checks.

  80. emperorzero says: May 12, 2011 10:14 PM

    Because god forbid someone spend nearly a billion dollars for a franchise and expect to make a profit.

  81. bravin4evr says: May 12, 2011 10:14 PM

    This is the owners fault. If they had never started calling the players PARTNERS then the players wouldn’t have the right to see the BOOKS!!! Partner’s in should be able to examine the books! Employee’s don’t get that right!

  82. upperdecker19 says: May 12, 2011 10:20 PM

    The owners won’t open the books!!!!!!! How can anyone in their right mind say that the players are greedy for not blindly agreeing to anything less than a 50% split of a mythical number?

    Regards,
    Non league employee
    Non player
    Former Sunday Ticket purchaser as of last month

  83. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 10:27 PM

    thefiesty1 says: May 12, 2011 9:09 PM

    The hell with a long term CBA. Shut it all down. All contracts are null and void and then start over dealing with individual players. Unions Suck!
    _________________________
    Question: are you trying to make yourself sound like a joke? “Unions Suck!” Do you even know what’s going on? The players decertified the union. There is no union. It’s the owners that are trying to force the players to reform the union. As for the owners declaring all contracts null and void, you might want to look up a little thing called contractual law. The contracts the teams have with the individual players are not linked to the cba, meaning they don’t simply disappear because there is no cba at the moment. they are legally binding contract entered into by two specific parties (the team and the player). Now, if there is no guaranteed money left in the contract, then the team can simply cut the player. If there is any guaranteed money left, however, the owners can not single-handedly cancel the contract without paying off the remaining guaranteed money. Doing so would leave them in breach of contract, which means they’d have to pay both the reamining guaranteed money and God only knows how much in punitive damages. Now, figure there’s hundreds of contracts with untold millions in guaranteed money still active out there, and that’s quite a bit of liability on their part. Owning a team doesn’t make you immune to the law.

  84. chrisdevaney says: May 12, 2011 10:35 PM

    It’s kinda insulting that just because there is a pro-owner sentiment that it must be because the league is paying their representatives to voice it, not that there is actually a pro-owner sentiment.

    I mostly side with the owners for two reasons:

    First, the arrogant argument that the players have they must be able to see each owner’s individual books. I don’t know of many privately owned businesses that open their books to their employees. The owners’ compromise on the issue sounded more than fair to me.

    Second, the grossly insubordinate attitude of several players to Goodell. The child-like and public way that the players have attacked him is ridiculously unprofessional and in most industries would lead to their termination.

    I love football and I don’t want to lose the season but I can understand the draw that shutting the league down rather having players dictate the terms of their employment would have for the owners.

    At the end of the day I hope that both parties sit down and work out a deal but it doesn’t mean that I don’t think that the owners are more in the right here.

  85. azbroncos says: May 12, 2011 10:38 PM

    @thefactor51 exibit A of why the players should not be backed, and get a little too emotional as well. State some facts, not feelings in your argument. Oh and the “guy who is mad he doesnt have an excuse to drink beer a few days of the week.” is the one buying the tickets to make sure you have a job. We are not “Bashing” you because just because you want more money. We are unhappy because you are attacking the core of the NFL, the draft, salary caps etc. Go live your dream of playing in the NFL, just don’t destroy the league while you do it!

  86. grandsonofcoach says: May 12, 2011 10:39 PM

    Honestly I lean toward the owners side, primarily because I fear the way that the players are attacking the league and the current rules (with anti-trust lawsuits) could significantly harm the competitive balance of the league and eventually destroy small market franchises (including my favorite team Green Bay). While I hate the fact that there is a lockout, I’m willing to wait for football to start if it means preserving the long term viability of the game.

  87. macker1283 says: May 12, 2011 10:39 PM

    Whether you are a Republican or Democrat, I can’t believe any football fans that are passionate enough to visit this website during the off season would actually be rooting for or in support of no NFL season this year. Are you people for real? Do you think about politics that much that you would sacrifice your love of sports for it? If you would, you are a pansy. Go back to watching C-Span or Fox News. We know you would rather watch Glen Beck than a football game anyways.

  88. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 10:40 PM

    snowpea84 says: May 12, 2011 8:43 PM

    Actually, I am kind of mad, not insulted. This is ridiculous. I think people get what is coming to them when they give power to unions. That is, they get destroyed businesses and ruined economies. To follow the path of unions in this country is to follow the follow a trail of blighted sectors.

    Some people side with the players, and don’t seem to understand that it is the players who need the owners. So I would like to see the owners close up shop, and give people a harsh dose of reality. Lew them know their true worth to the world.
    ______________________
    Please, by all means let them. Then, while the owners are spending all their time in court dealing with lawsuits brought by the networks, sponsors, suppliers, etc a smaller league like the UFL or a new league will pop up to take advantage of a tremendously valuable market that is no longer being tapped. Leagues attempting to fill the void will hire the best players they can get their hands on, which will create a bidding war for elite players the likes of which we haven’t seen since the NFL and AFL went at it. Eventually, either one league will take control of the market or multiple smaller leagues will merge to create a new league comparable to the current NFL. Either way, the market would not be left vacant for long at all. There is nothing special about NFL owners (ok, the Rooney and Mara families were wise enough to put the advancement of the league ahead of their own short-term interests which is both farsighted and rare these days). If they all disappeared (along with the NFL) the love of football would not disappear with them. Someone else would simply fill the void. As my Economics background teaches me, a valuable market will not remain untapped for long unless an outside force actively prevents it.

  89. FinFan68 says: May 12, 2011 10:44 PM

    thefactor51 says:
    May 12, 2011 9:39 PM
    As a player it is hard to see why the NFL is the number one sport with all the player bashing and hating that goes on in these comments. Then dont watch then.”…”I’m tired of getting lumped together with all these idiots who make ludacris comments and do stupid stuff to give the rest of us a bad name.”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    There are idiots on both sides who can’t formulate a lucid argument so they resort to “bashing” those on the “other” side. The bashing is not based on individual players (except for the idiots you mention). To complain and say, don’t watch is not a smart move by someone dependent upon the fans. Fewer fans = less revenue = less $$ to split up.

    You are getting lumped together with the idiot players because you are collectively on the same side during the labor dispute. It is assumed that the players are of a like mind when it concerns the tactics/positions used by the representatives/lawyers. There may be a few that don’t like what their side is doing but speaking out lessens the potential gain.

    If you do not like “getting lumped together with all these idiots who make ludacris comments and do stupid stuff to give the rest of us a bad name” then why not stand up and make it known that you disapprove of their actions that tarnish the reputation of the rest of the players? That is a rare thing and the players that do it gain the respect of many of the fans. Remaining silent is akin to condoning the behavior you seem to abhor.

    I appreciate the hard work necessary to become and remain successful in your chosen profession and I don’t have an issue with the players being adequately compensated, but I think you guys should have negotiated rather than decertify/attack the league on anti-trust grounds.

  90. scudbot says: May 12, 2011 10:45 PM

    stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 9:43 PM
    It’s league profit that the owners are claiming has taken a hit, and that is due to investments in new stadiums and other league costs.
    —–
    I’d post the link to the Packers’ books but PFT doesn’t allow that. The Packers’ books clearly show that what’s increased the most is player salary followed by insurance. Articles have been written about this lots of major publications but perhaps you haven’t noticed. If you have access to some other set of financial info that shows stadium and “other league costs” account for the threat to net and dropping profits and player costs aren’t to blame, lay it on me.

  91. capslockkey says: May 12, 2011 10:47 PM

    It’s just as likely that a player could be commenting just as much as someone affiliated with the NFL. Would you make that same accusation if the pro-player comments dominated the site? I highly doubt it. …and yep, you got me. I’m really Bill Polian’s nephew and the Colts pay me 20 grand to post here. Sad this place is starting to make rumors and gossip about their own website (with Deadspin of all places as a source) since the football rumors and gossip are pretty thin these days. Anything to get more traffic I guess.

  92. kire562000 says: May 12, 2011 10:48 PM

    I think you see a lot of “dumb jock” feeling coming out of a lot people. Because they play a sport, people seem to feel that it is a privilege that they get to play what is deemed “a game” for a living. Many seem to forget that less than .05% of the people in the world have the talent to do what they do for a living, a certainly no one posting here can do it. Lastly there is a bit of jealousy here, they can afford all the toys they want and people feel that playing football is not a “honest living.” Last I checked, you either do what you love, what is available, or what you are best at, and these guys play football better than anyone on the planet. If the NFL players were expendable as ALL of us are at work, do you think they would be negotiating with the players? They would say have a nice day and move on.

    This is not a job for everyone, you have to be supremely talented, driven, and part crazy to get into a car accident 100 times a week, risk permanent brain damage, loss of limbs, and risk being handicapped for life, to play this game. Anyone here better than Peyton throwing the football, or Chris Johnson, or has a the body and Speed of TO? I didn’t think so. Stop being jealous and stop disrespecting the men that entertain you for 25 weeks a year, because if any of us could do it, we would sign up today. But no one pays to see over weight, slow, non athletic people play sports.

    There is a reason why we watch the NFL, it is the best athletes MONEY can buy, playing a game WE love to watch. How much would you charge if you had the ability (you don’t) to do something less than 1% of the people in the world can do? Bet it wont be for free.

  93. tnsteve says: May 12, 2011 10:52 PM

    The same arguments you make about the 8th circuit judges can probably be made about NFL fans in general. Fans with more money – many fans – are more likely to be affiliated with the Republican party and thus be more likely to side with the owners, and vice versa. This doesn’t surprise me in the least.

  94. scudbot says: May 12, 2011 10:58 PM

    tommyf15 says: May 12, 2011 9:07 PM Meanwhile, baseball collected $7 BILLION in revenues last year, which is more than double of the amount from eight years ago.
    —–
    I’m not going to give a damn if the NFL makes a $trillion. I won’t be engaged anymore just like I’m no longer engaged by MLB. When there’s a have/have not league and two NYC teams, Jerryball and the LA Bling are all that have a shot, I won’t be watching.

  95. thedizzypub says: May 12, 2011 11:05 PM

    I own a business hence the screen name. If my empoyees came to me and demanded 57% of the pie or they would sit out till i caved in I would walk to the local gas station and buy a gallon of gas and burn the place to the ground. Too bad the owners just cant release every single player on there team and or every player in the league. Put an offer on the table and say take or leave it like it happens everyday in America, If they dont like it shut it down and open up shop somewhere else. I do not have 367 screen names and 367 email accounts so I can be pro league. The players are greedy little spoiled brats that play a game for a living and get paid way too much money for it. Take your $100,000 educations and get to work loading luggage, bagging groceries and dig some ditches.

  96. stanklepoot says: May 12, 2011 11:07 PM

    smacklayer says: May 12, 2011 9:46 PM

    One thing I have noticed is that pro player comments tent to be of the personal attack nature, i.e. “owners are greedy”, “8th circuit judges are republican shills paid off by the NFL”, “F Goodell”, “they’re screwing the fans”, and the like.

    Most pro league posts are rational, give good explanations for why they came to their conclusions, support long term health of the league, and give pertinent examples.

    The problem is that there is no defense for why the players are doing this. No one can defend it. I have not heard one player, player rep, NFLPA spokesperson, Debag Smith, etc. offer any kind of logical defense on why they are doing this. Everyone knows, including the players, that what they doing with the law suits is wrong. They obviously can’t back out of it now, but I have a feeling that many players wish it go down this road. There is no win here for the players.
    __________________________
    Please tell me you’re joking. Take another look at the comments on just this article. There are idiots on both sides, but some of the least informed and most personal attacks that I’ve seen are coming from the pro-owner contingent. For instance, it’s rather maddening to hear people claim that they are the ones who know what’s going on, and then in the next breath blame everything on unions. The players decertified the union. this isn’t about what some union is doing. In fact, it’s the owners that want the players to be unionized. So, if you’re going to be pro-owner, you might want to hold off an the anti-union rhetoric, at least for the sake of your argument here. By the way, accusing the other side of resorting to personal attacks and then referring to DeMaurice Smith as Debag Smith, that’s just special. You must have been captain of the debate team.
    Now, please explain how there is no defense for what the players are doing? There are anti-trust laws in this country. The NFL is set up in such a way that the 32 teams work collectively to dominate the market and fix prices, costs, and player movement amongst the individual companies (teams in this case). That is, by definition, a violation of American anti-trust laws. When there was a players union and a CBA, the owners were protected by anti-trust exemptions. Well, the owners opted out of the CBA and failed to come to terms with the players on a new one. The players felt the need to decertify the union to fight a lockout they knew was coming. So, now, there is no CBA and no union which leaves the league vulnerable to civil litigation. Seems like a perfectly reasonable defense of their actions to me. You might not like it, and you may be worried about the potential for unintended outcomes because of their actions, but the players are well within their rights to file such suits. In fact, with a lockout in place, it’s the only real leverage they have.

  97. nineroutsider says: May 12, 2011 11:09 PM

    Jerry?

    Go Sharks!

  98. canadianvikingfaniii says: May 12, 2011 11:10 PM

    Yeah just like PFT being completely unbiased in its articles.

  99. tuna7451 says: May 12, 2011 11:23 PM

    All of this bickering back and forth over who is right and who is wrong is ludicrous. And that goes for the anti-union comments as well. Civil discourse seems to have vanished in this country. Maybe a complete shut down of the NFL is the correct way to proceed. I have read comments on this site that would suggest that the NFL is the focal point of life as we know it on this planet. Seriously? Get a grip folks. Better yet, get a life. A complete shut down might help with that. It is not the end of the world. I stopped caring long ago when I figured out that no matter what happens prices for everything related to the NFL were only going to continue to go up. And that’s not the fault of the players. It’s the owners who have elected to pay outrageous salaries to players (some of whom are out and out criminals), as well as, trying to gouge the fans for every last penny that can be sent. Screw all of them. Shut it down. Cry havoc, and let loose the lawyers on all concerned (to loosely paraphrase Shakespeare).

  100. hobartbaker says: May 12, 2011 11:34 PM

    Being vociferously pro owner, I sent some time sheets into the league office. The were promptly rejected without explanation. I became indignant and they just said “So, sue us.”.

  101. jamoe17 says: May 12, 2011 11:39 PM

    So Mark not only continues to alienate the NFL, but is now insulting the obvious MAJORITY that supports the owners. Besides the obvious ethical issues with this line of sensationalism…it also makes perfect business sense.

  102. pigeonpea says: May 12, 2011 11:59 PM

    Hey Mike, there is no Jesse Ventura-style conspiracy here. Those of us who love football mainly support the owners because we like the cap, the draft the FA and everything else that makes this sport exciting to watch. If the players get their way, it becomes a league of blowouts and dynasties where the small market teams don’t have a chance. Most of us are willing to sacrifice the 2011 season to ensure that doesn’t happen.

    You, on the other hand, side with the players because if there is no 2011 season, your lucrative contract with NBC may just come to an abrupt halt when all you have to report on is the CFL and UFL. For all I know, the few pro-player comments on this site may very well be made by various sockpuppets invented by you and your co-bloggers to try to ensure that doesn’t happen.

    Conspiracy theories work both ways, my friend.

  103. tommyf15 says: May 13, 2011 12:01 AM

    scudbot says:
    May 12, 2011 10:58 PM
    I’m not going to give a damn if the NFL makes a $trillion. I won’t be engaged anymore just like I’m no longer engaged by MLB. When there’s a have/have not league and two NYC teams, Jerryball and the LA Bling are all that have a shot, I won’t be watching.

    Nine of the last ten World Series Championships have been won in the last ten years.

    And we’re not interested in you. No one cares if YOU will be watching or not.

  104. junglerott says: May 13, 2011 12:01 AM

    Its always the same on here,,when it comes to blasting on someone who has it coming,,{that happens to be black} come out with their words blazing..or just brainwashed drones and often uneducated on any issue besides race..pretty Pathetic..the rest of us have got past the past,,except you..continue on your Victim,,Crybaby Whining,,Marxist,,way of thinking just like your grand leader Oblah-the biggest LIAR in the history of the president..follow on DRONES..and ignore the facts that you dont mind your ignorant youths killing each other EVERY SINGLE DAY,,IN EVERY SINGLE CITY,,JUST WORRY ABOUT SOME WHITE OWNERS WHO ACTUALLY DID SOMETHING AND MADE ENOUGH MONEY IN THEIR LIVES,,TO EMPLOY YOUR HEROES..YOU ARE A JOKE..

  105. straitalk says: May 13, 2011 12:09 AM

    For the first and last time, you pseudo football fans need to understand I dont give a damn whether you are pro owner or player. In fact, when did that become the question? The question for real fans is when the sport they love will start again. Not whose vested interests will best be served by a shutdown, or decertification, or collusion, or greed, union busting, or unfairness. I just dont care either way. Screw who ever needs to be screwed to get the issue resolved and to restart the game I love. What, is being offended by pointing to the insincere nature of your argument part of your talking points as well? “I’m offended, I’m hurt, I’m frustrated!” Sheez! Well I’m offended that some PR campaign is being used to dilute and drown out the honest sincere voices of those real fans that love football, and couldn’t give a damn about who wins but just wants their game back!

  106. junglerott says: May 13, 2011 12:11 AM

    UNIONS ARE RUINING THIS COUNTRY..ASK EUROPE..BUT AGAIN DONT LET THE FACTS IN YOUR WAY F!@#ING COMMIES..

  107. dublinpacker says: May 13, 2011 12:13 AM

    My mom and dad were cousins and union members but i am still on the owners side. I am just saying that because Roger told me to say it.

  108. andrewfbrowne says: May 13, 2011 12:44 AM

    All right you all caught me. I am actually Ralph Wilson owner of the Buffalo Bills. I am 92 years old.

    Seriously…I do not know what is worse, that it was suggested or that the league dignified it with a response.

    AndrewFBrowne is my real name. I am sales manager from Atlanta, GA. I think the players can strike and hold out for a better deal, then the owners have to be to do something to apply leverage, and since they can’t lock the players out they should be able to shut the league down to force negotiations.

  109. straitalk says: May 13, 2011 12:55 AM

    At least we know the owner PR champaign is being orchestrated somewhere off the east coast. All the hyper pro-owner sentiment stopped suddenly at about 7:30 est. End of their paid work day I would guess. Come on PFT, take some responsibility here, and do some investigative work here on behalf of the average football fan. A simple review of existing reports of email activity and history sorted by subject should do it. It’s not like there is a lot of real football talk to discuss, anyway.

  110. ffootballontwitter says: May 13, 2011 1:04 AM

    @thefactor51
    I believe you. I, as a fan, do not fault players who take their agent’s advice, nor do I bash players for pursuing their dream.

    I’m simply troubled by the NFLPA*’s stance that the league is using its antitrust exemption to harm the players.

    If I didn’t know better, it’s as if the NFLPA* has adopted the sheriff strategy from Blazing Saddles.

    http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/upvZdVK913I&hl=en&fs=1&rel=0&start=160

  111. piemasteruk says: May 13, 2011 1:55 AM

    “Unfortunately, there’s no evidence to prove or disprove any suspicions regarding the identity of folks who are posting pro-owner comments.”

    There may not be any proof or disproof, but there is certainly evidence available (if you choose to use it). See what % of ‘pro owner’ posters only post about the labour dispute or only started posting when the dispute began. Compare that number with the ‘pro player’ posters. Check the IP Addresses of the pro owner posters and see if they are concentrated in one location.

    You can add me to the list of people who feels extremely offended by this article. I happen to be ‘pro owner’ (by your standards). I have been visiting this site for about 5 years and post on a number of topics covering all aspects of football and I’m not even American (you can check that from my IP Address). You can safely assume that I am low risk to be a ‘shill’. I think both sides of the conflict have acted somewhat unreasonably, but my comments tend to come down on the side of the owners for a number of reasons:

    1. The site seems very pro player to me and I tend to play devil’s advocate.

    2. An owners victory would seem to be more conductive to the long term health of football than a players victory. Yes that’s *long term* as in longer than the “OMG there MUST be football on September 11th!!one!!” If the players win it would seem to open the door for anti-trust laws to ruin football. And even if you give the players what they want, what is to stop the next generation of players demanding even more in 3-4 years time?

    3. Players seem to have an overinflated sense of their own importance. If every single current NFL player quit tomorrow, I would be just as happy watching the second tier of players who can’t quite make it at the moment. The owners who invest millions of their own money into francises are much less replacable.

    4. I am a libertarian and tend to side with whichever party in an argument is supported by the free market. The owners have money. They are (partly collectively, partly individually)offering some of that money to players in exchange for playing football. If that offer is not acceptable to the players then they have the option not to play (nobody is *forcing* them to play in the NFL or even play football at all). When people start invoking labour laws and challenging the rights of adults to do what they want with their own money, they usually always lose my support.

    At the end of the day these are my *opinions*, I don’t pretend they are anything more than that. I don’t mind if people are ‘pro player’ instead. I don’t even mind if this whole site has a pro player bias. But I do wholeheartedly resent any implication that people who support the owners are some kind of shills. That’s an all time low.

  112. tompapp1 says: May 13, 2011 2:09 AM

    I am more than willing to believe that most if not all the pro owner posts are not owner plants because in the history of NFL labor negotiations most fans have sided with the owners. IMO of all the NFL labor disputes this is the most the fans have sided with the players. Of course as usual there still are a lot of fans siding with the owners. I believe now as in the past the main reason for this is just like the owners and players are being selfish in pursuing their self interests so are the fans. Most fans IMHO are not objective they want what they want which is football. For a long time I have believed most fans that side with the owners do so not because of who is right or wrong but because they believe this will get them football sooner than later. In the 1987 NFL labor battle the owners won because fans committed their time and money to watching replacement players and that did end the dispute. Was what the fans did fair to the players and the concept of making the NFL the best possible NFL as far as morality is concerned. Well that is for everyone to decide but the fans selfish desires were satisfied because of their actions. I also believe that the reason so many fans side with the NFL over the NFLPA is because from their selfish perspective the owners are the authority and the players are the peons so they go with whom they believe is the real power in the dispute.

    I typically and for sure in this dispute side with the players for many reasons. Number one NFL players have short careers in a very violent sport. For this reason I believe all things being equal they should get the nod over the owners unless there is a good reason otherwise. The owners use these men for their own selfish pursuit without every putting their bodies in harms way. Number two the first NFL union leader a sleazy lawyer Ed Harvey screwed the players in their first CBA and the NFL players have had the worst CBA’s and union reps of all major sports since that time. AFter 40 some years of having a union they finally got a deal that gave them a slight edge over the owners and the owners bailed out of the agreement they agreed to as soon as they legally could. Now owners like Jerry Jones who is in debt big time because of his new stadium and ex NFL player Jerry Richardson who is determined to beat the players in this war most definitely IMO led a group of owners who wanted to test if not break the union. The players have already shown a willingness to make a small concession but insist on proof of financial hardship if they are to make the big concessions the owners want.

    Now the whole thing got to the courts and perhaps it is beyond irony and into reality that most every time a major sport goes to court against a players union the owners lose. You see in court both sides have to deal with a third party the judge whose job it is to uphold a balance of that which is fair and legal for both sides. Again I point out that when this third party enters the picture history shows the vast majority of the the owners are the ones who are fingered as the party which is not being fair and sometimes not even legal such as negotiating TV contracts with a lockout in mind. Is it really a coincidence that owners lose in court so very often? For those that love to rant about how these judges that side with the players are soft headed liberals or worse closet socialists. Do you really believe deep in your selfish hearts that during 4 decades of labor sport disputes all those judges that sided with the players were not just trying to do their jobs to the best of their abilities.

    Bottom line in this latest labor battle once again the owners suck big time and the players suck much less.

  113. kindbass says: May 13, 2011 2:50 AM

    You people need to get it into your skulls that the NFL is not your everyday mom-and-pop business, and analogies along those lines make no sense. And just because this is a free country, doesn’t mean you can run a business “any way you want to” just because its yours. Its a free-enterprise, capitalistic society, but we still have laws. Its not some kind of free-for-all where everyone has to “just deal with it.”

  114. kindbass says: May 13, 2011 2:55 AM

    thedizzypub says:
    May 12, 2011 11:05 PM
    I own a business hence the screen name. If my empoyees came to me and demanded 57% of the pie or they would sit out till i caved in I would walk to the local gas station and buy a gallon of gas and burn the place to the ground. Too bad the owners just cant release every single player on there team and or every player in the league. Put an offer on the table and say take or leave it like it happens everyday in America, If they dont like it shut it down and open up shop somewhere else. I do not have 367 screen names and 367 email accounts so I can be pro league. The players are greedy little spoiled brats that play a game for a living and get paid way too much money for it. Take your $100,000 educations and get to work loading luggage, bagging groceries and dig some ditches.
    _________________________________

    Can’t wait for the day some retired player takes his $100,000 education in business management, opens a bar right next to yours, and puts you out of work. Happens every day in America.

  115. edweird0 says: May 13, 2011 3:39 AM

    @stanklepoot

    Out of all the comments on here, yours have been some of the most precise, logic, and best articulated I have read. I applaud you for your ability to provide something meaningful to the discussion instead of copy and pasting the same Pro-(insert your side here) arguments. You are completely 100% correct and it’s a shame so many people on here can’t seem to look past their biased belief systems to simply take a moment to take in the actual facts that matter.

  116. freebird2011 says: May 13, 2011 6:24 AM

    I look at it this way. Anything that brings the parties back to the negotiating table is a good thing.

    For now, I’m siding with the owners simply because the Union walked away from negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement and decided to litigate instead. Litigation is not going to get us any closer to seeing football in the fall.

    If the owners only weapon to level the playing field (and force the Union back to the negotiating table) is to shut down the league, I say “so be it.” It worked for the NHL, it could potentially work for the NFL.

    The overwhelming majority of fans don’t care how the financial pie is divided. It doesn’t matter.

    However, fans do care about things like the Draft and Free Agency. The reason: hope for the future. I have to think most fans don’t want to see player acquisition become the wild west, where anything goes. That wouldn’t be good for the game.

  117. saints25 says: May 13, 2011 6:39 AM

    @stanklepoot>>> go get a job,the players have screwed there fans& sport over…Why do you care how much your BOSS makes?it none of your got dang business!!!!!!

  118. johnnyoclock says: May 13, 2011 6:52 AM

    You’re doing it again, Mr. F.

    You and those like you just can’t grasp that when things don’t go your way there has to be some conspiracy or whatever.

    I’ll ask the question again: Why is it incredulous to you and people like you that maybe the players are the ones who are wrong??

    But you can’t believe anyone who has an opinion or belief contrary to you is actually authentic.

    Stop it. Please.

    Again, people care about one thing:

    Are you a business who takes care of your workers?

    Yes, the NfL does, to the tune of millions. And when a business does in fact take care of it’s workers, to the tune of millions, people don’t care how much the owners take in their pockets after that.

    Why can’t you and people like you grasp that???

    But nooo it’s just a conspiracy. It’s of course never that maybe you’re wrong oh nooo. People aren’t allowed to have their own minds oh nooo, we’re all just shills. We don’t have real opinions. Noo it’s just a conspiracy.

    Grow up Mr F, you’re smarter than that, Please.

  119. knightazure says: May 13, 2011 7:15 AM

    grandsonofcoach says:
    May 12, 2011 10:39 PM
    Honestly I lean toward the owners side, primarily because I fear the way that the players are attacking the league and the current rules (with anti-trust lawsuits) could significantly harm the competitive balance of the league and eventually destroy small market franchises (including my favorite team Green Bay). While I hate the fact that there is a lockout, I’m willing to wait for football to start if it means preserving the long term viability of the game.

    ————–

    I’ve read through (most of) these comments, and I find interesting arguments on both side. Yes, there’s an amount of meaningless rhetoric from both sides, but I think there are valid points on both side, too.
    I’ve changed my mind several times, and I don’t think I’ll actually make my mind up on the situation, but this post seems to hit the nail on the head for me. It was becoming more obvious as I read, but it was summed up nicely here.

    For me, it’s no longer a case of whether the players deserve more money or not, or whether the owners should keep more money or not (it’s a symbiotic relationship – both sides need the other), but rather, it’s becoming more and more apparent that if the players win out, it will probably spell the end for the CBA, the draft, free agency, spending limits and league parity.

    So maybe that makes me pro-owner. I’d rather say I’m pro-good-football.

  120. whatsafairway says: May 13, 2011 7:42 AM

    When I see organized events by players, not being paid, so their teams might still have a chance to succeed if there is a season, I see the heart these guys have and I cringe when this is portrayed as owners vs. players.

    From what I see and read, it’s the NFLPA that is the ultimate stumbling block keeping negotiations from moving forward. They would much rather be in a court room. It’s this approach I find contemptible.

    Get back to the table, work out the differences and give those players who obviously care and the fans an opportunity for the season to take place.

  121. wtfru2 says: May 13, 2011 8:11 AM

    Do you want to keep your credibility with the fans? Don’t attack us, we are your bread and butter!

    I’m on the owners side because they work hard their entire life to get where they are. The players are,,,,, well,,,, take Rashard Mendenhall for example.

    By the way I don’t work for any team!

  122. nbcwantsitsmoneyback says: May 13, 2011 8:22 AM

    Seriously do you think that the owners really give an expletive deleted about this site. I am pro owner and have nothing to do with the NFL.

    Your ego is getting way too big…!

  123. bigdog214 says: May 13, 2011 8:38 AM

    The owners wouldn’t want to start a new league. It’s a poor bluff. They would never get another anti-trust exemption and without that, they have problems.

  124. snowpea84 says: May 13, 2011 8:58 AM

    @stanklepoot

    You are missing several key items there. For starters, this void would not be fill3ed instantly, the current players would be left for the next several years with far smaller salaries than they apparently would ever tolerate.
    These other leagues would have to obtain the resources currently at the disposal of the NFL.
    Would these other leagues be forced into the labor conditions the NFL is currently fighting against? If so, these other leagues would be hindered not jsut from growing larger than the current NFL, but from even reaching that league as a much larger part of their investments would have to go to players.
    It goes on and on. Please leave your intermediate econ courses at the door.

  125. fargovikesfan says: May 13, 2011 9:34 AM

    of course all the pro-league comments are by league employees. How could any rational human being not on the take from the NFL not support the players? You know, the guys that compare playing a kids game and making millions of dollars to modern day slavery, or the fact that they may have to sell one of their 6 bentleys because they aren’t getting a paycheck, or saying that Bin Laden never got to tell his side of the story and questioning how a jumbo jet can take down a skyscraper. Yup, the players are the voice of reason in this fight. Lets pay these idiots more while people with real jobs struggle to pay their bills every month.

  126. Ty @ The Lions in Winter says: May 13, 2011 9:50 AM

    “And if my son played in the NFL making $2-3 million, and told that he wanted more than the 50% he and his teammates were getting? I would tell him to thank God that he was GIVEN the talent, was GIVEN the coaching, and GIVEN the opportunity to work hard and be rewarded with riches beyond most people’s imaginations to play a game that many of us would have, and many before him did play for so much less.”

    . . . and most of all, he should thank the owners, whose GRANDFATHER’S BLOOD, SWEAT, AND TEARS EARNED them the franchise, personal fortune, or both that they WORKED SO HARD to INHERIT!!!!!!!!

    Peace
    Ty

  127. idontcareuknow says: May 13, 2011 9:51 AM

    First, as a college student, I’d love to get paid to state a pro-(insert party here) post. But alas, I’m not so lucky.

    One argument I’ve seen is that players deserve to get paid for working so hard. Because players are the only ones who train and risk their lives everyday.

    That argument is well and good, but really with a rookie cap and 50% of the money going to the players, there is more than enough money for the players. Don’t tell me a 4 year player who made minimum NFL wage can’t be set for his future. In 4 years that player has made over a million dollars. The trick is, not blowing that money. And frankly, that is the player’s responsibility. Yes, he will have to work post-football, but you know whats funny, not many people can retire at age 26.

    And with regards to the NFLPA, the decertification places the league in a situation where it cannot operate. This occurs because, oddly enough (thank the old time unions), the government has many laws to protect employees. The circumvention of these laws comes from the CBA. However, De Smith must have gone to union business propaganda school because I get the feeling he wasn’t willing to negotiate (“Do not give anything back!” was one of his quotes). As annoying and bothersome as it may be, negotiations are necessary to have an agreement. Hence, if I must be categorized, I’m pro-owner, even though they crafted the previous CBA which caused this mess. For that, I also blame Tags for caring too much about his legacy, and even though I’m not a fan of his, thank you Goodell for not (even though PFT clearly thinks you should).

  128. rad312 says: May 13, 2011 10:09 AM

    tommyf15 with respects to your comments about MLB, if you take a closer look at the industry you will find baseball is thriving is select markets which are primarily the major markets however the mid-to-small market is numbers have been on a steady decline for years.

    There is no level of competitiveness in baseball as year in and year out the Yankees who out spend every team is in the playoffs and on those very rare occasions when the Yankees fail to make the post season there is a collective cheer as people who do not support the Yankees collective cheer for their failures.

    The reality is baseball is an industry of the haves and the haves-not, occasionally a have-not (TB, FLA, MIN) will a brief successful run and then are forced to sell-off players or watch them walk away as free agents.

    The beauty of the NFL is it’s competitive balance with the opportunity for teams to have a one-year turnaround (worst to first) and to have sustained success.

    The major markets support baseball industry.

    Do we want a system that we can only count on the major markets to out spend the lesser markets and buy themselves into the playoffs, or do we want to maintain a system that rewards teams that know how to build a franchise, manage a salary cap, and sustain a winning environment, such as GB, PIT, NE, and PHI.

    Don’t be fooled by the numbers, $7B or $9B it is irrelevant, focus your attention of the system, does it provide a competitive and balanced system so that us the fan regardless of the team that you support believe our team has a chance entering every year and on any given Sunday.

  129. puregreed says: May 13, 2011 10:30 AM

    Favorite players? My last favorite player was Bo Jackson and I was 12. I don’t have favorite players, I also don’t have a jersey with an owners name on it, but I have my team jersey. I will gladly put it back on in 2012, when I start watching football again. The internet will keep me informed.

    Go grassroots football!!

  130. filkman says: May 13, 2011 10:41 AM

    Hey Mike,

    As always, your perceptions are spot-on and impeccably insightful…you are the BEST.

    Love,
    Mom

  131. hatesycophants says: May 13, 2011 11:11 AM

    Told ya so!!!

    They are still here and they are still posting.

    If not for the spectacular abilities of the players, the game would have died decades ago. Most of the owners did not go out and make a billion dollars to purchase a team. Most of the owners are not good business minds. I watch NFL football because the athletes are capable of doing things 99% of the population of the planet could never do. I do not watch because Viginia McCaskey and Willie Clay Ford are great at marketing.

    Pull your heads out, corporate shills.

  132. straitalk says: May 13, 2011 11:26 AM

    I’ve went over the pseudo arguments reiterated in all the pro-owner blog responses and have come up with a list of the NFL PR campaign talking points. You shills let me know which points I’ve left off. If you have an honest opinion either way then this shouldn’t bother you at all. In fact pro owner loyalists ought to be angry that the NFL is paying people to make a point they can honestly make for themselves.

    1. Most important point. Preface all your arguments with your support of the owners. Whether football is played this year is secondary to everything else.
    2. Be extremely offended when someone actually espouses that they are being played by a PR campaign in support of one side only.
    3. Articulate your pro-owner position using logic, always pointing to the emotional and irrational arguments of non owner opinions.
    4. Blame the unions when at all possible!
    5. Emphasize the need to sacrifice your desire to see football played this year for the “betterment of football” in the long term.

    Ok, this last point is where you separate the wheat from the chafe, or the real football fan from the paid PR worker. Understand, I am in the ‘I don’t give a damn who wins’ category. With 9.5 billion being divvied up, there won’t be any losers except real football fans if football doesn’t get started asap. Btw, this is emotional for me, because I’m a real fan of the sport of football, no apologies given.

  133. certtified49er says: May 13, 2011 11:47 AM

    I believe PFT is right. What sane person would want football to completely shut down?Not only do I believe there are team personnel making comments , but I believe there are paid blogger’s. They all seem like complete followers, Republicans or just incapable of their own opinion. I tend to support the players more because they didn’t lock anyone out, I watch them on Sundays and my kids wear their jerseys. I LOVE MY TEAM, but I just don’t understand the NFL needing more money when they hit RECORD numbers back to back years. There are at least 15 billionaire owners in the NFL. Are they really starving? I bash the players at times too, but at least I’m fair and rational. These Pro-Owner comments seem very bias without merit. I know the majority of “U” will THUMBS DOWN this. Thanks

  134. eagleswin says: May 13, 2011 12:17 PM

    certtified49er says:May 13, 2011 11:47 AM

    ——————

    1. You insulted anyone who doesn’t agree with you. Repeatedly and with a wide variety of accusations.

    2. Your main reasons for supporting the players are because you watch them on TV, they didn’t lock anyone out, and the owners are rich.

    3. You don’t address a single point of anything the players did in this whole mess.

    4. You summed everything up by declaring yourself fair and rational.

    I think you did a good job of representing the player supporters point of view. It may not be fair and rational but it does seem accurately reflect the thought processes of the player supporters.

  135. piemasteruk says: May 13, 2011 12:18 PM

    Weirdly, although I have voiced my general disgust with this article, I think there is actually a reasonable chance that there are a couple of league employees/shills posting on PFT. I also think it’s entirely possible that there are some players/agents posting on the other side of the argument too. In fact it wouldn’t surprise me if several NFL players and staff have accounts on this and other football forums and post their side anonymously on various issues going back a number of years. Are you telling me that players/owners with the great judgement of Rashard Mendenhall/Michael Vick/Al Davis (this is an equl opportunities rant) could always resist replying when they read something they didn’t like about them on the internet?

    What I fear is that one of these ‘shills’ will be found out somehow. And they will be used as ‘proof’ that the whole forum is full of shills, rather that what is almost certainly the case that there are a couple of insiders, but most people posting here are just genuine fans. And then the whole comments section of PFT breaks down into accusations of shilling on both sides in every single debate.

    And that would suck.

  136. nineroutsider says: May 13, 2011 12:18 PM

    I am not sure why everyone is surprised about pro-owner comments. Furthermore, I am under the impression that the comments are, sadly, authentic.

    I don’t find it surprising at all given the current political climate in this country. There is great disdain towards Union and a mistaken notion that they are communist. A few generations now have been educated by right-wing talk radio and the pro-owner comments largely ooze their typically talking points. These people are also very proud and vocal – typical blowhards. They are the people that most of us would hate to get trapped into a political conversation with. They are neither pragmatic, nor ‘independent thinkers’. Sadly, moderates are disappearing from America and it will be a problem…it already is.

    Combine that with the fact that some of the pro-owner guys own small businesses (as do I) and somehow, in their convoluted thought process, compare themselves to billionaires and their industries to the NFL. This is called an ecological fallacy and is a mistake – the NFL is nothing like your industry. Stop providing anecdotal posts!

    Combine all of this with a tinge of racism and jealousy and you have a typical pro-owner post that blasts ‘da dumb@ss playas’ who should accept what the owners give them ‘lest they be bagging groceries’. I could go on and on.

    However, just like anything else, not all pro-owner comments should be lumped together. Some are very reasoned and compelling. One of my favorite pro-owner guys is RhodeIslandPatsFan (or something like that). The guys who make the argument that the owners are the custodians of the game present a compelling argument. This is the reason that I am not married to one side, although initially I was much more pro player. I am largely pro pro-football. I want the Court to end the lockout and I want both sides to agree to a deal they hate…the true hallmark of a deal that will be good for the game.

  137. eagleswin says: May 13, 2011 12:28 PM

    straitalk says:May 13, 2011 11:26 AM

    Understand, I am in the ‘I don’t give a damn who wins’ category.

    ————————————-

    Of course you do, otherwise why write this post? Why mock one side of the argument and not the other?

    Maybe if you had stuck to just “Understand, I am in the ‘I don’t give a damn who wins’ category. With 9.5 billion being divvied up, there won’t be any losers except real football fans if football doesn’t get started asap. Btw, this is emotional for me, because I’m a real fan of the sport of football, no apologies given.”

    If that’s the way you feel, fine, but the rest of the post is not even pro-player, it’s extremely anti-owner supporter. You aren’t making rational arguments for the players side, you are merely mocking a point of view that is different from yours.

  138. rufio1984 says: May 13, 2011 12:52 PM

    Here is a point:

    Why would the people that work for the NFL be pro-owners (besides getting a pay check). No football means NO JOB.
    They probably make at most $50,000/year and could LOSE that if a shut down, while players and owners are fighting over MILLIONS/BILLIONS that they will still have (IF they know how to save) regardless if there is football or not.

  139. ramsfan28 says: May 13, 2011 1:22 PM

    I think it’s a bit naive to assume that both the players and the owners aren’t going to comment sections and trying to sway public opinion. If Goodell is willing to call the owner of a Colts specific blog, you don’t think that the League has people monitoring one of the most popular football Web sites on the net in PFT? Especially when it’s owned by one of the networks that broadcasts their product? With that said, I wouldn’t be surprised if the players are doing the same thing nor would I say that ALL the pro-player or pro-owner comments here are from plants, and would say the vast majority aren’t.

    But I must say I am surprised at the level of pro-league comments. Don’t get me wrong, I see the players as a group of cry baby millionaires and between the Peterson slavery comment and the Bush and Hall ‘loving the lockout’ comments, I’m just as pissed at them as I am the league. But at the end of the day, we HAD a CBA in place that both the owners and players agreed to, it’s the owners who decided to opt out of it. It’s the owners who started this whole sh*t show. The players just decided that they were going to do their damnedest to contribute to this sh*t show after it started by not being flexible in negotiations.

    All in all, they’re both equally sets of rich cry babies who need to work this out. They both have far more to lose than the fans do.

  140. certtified49er says: May 13, 2011 1:37 PM

    @Eagleswin-
    1. You insulted anyone who doesn’t agree with you. Repeatedly and with a wide variety of accusations.

    REPLY- Really I insulted everyone who doesn’t agree with me? You don’t even know me. This is my freedom of speech opinion. The same way you all judge footballs players anytime a media report comes along before anyone is found guilty.

    2. Your main reasons for supporting the players are because you watch them on TV, they didn’t lock anyone out, and the owners are rich.

    REPLY- I support the players more because they didn’t opt out of the agreement like the owners did. Your word is your bond. If it was a bad deal they shouldn’t have done it. I just bought a car and found it was crappy. I can’t turn it back in because I signed a contract, an agreement. It was my mistake and my lost. I have to deal with it.

    3. You don’t address a single point of anything the players did in this whole mess.

    REPLY- Why do I need to address the players points? I would’ve preferred to address that once the original CBA ended and so should the owners. If it makes you happy thou, I was upset they de-certified without pushing harder for a new CBA. There could of been at least one more extension

    4. You summed everything up by declaring yourself fair and rational.I think you did a good job of representing the player supporters point of view. It may not be fair and rational but it does seem accurately reflect the thought processes of the player supporters.

    REPLY-I’m regular fan of the game. I’m just not ignorant enough to believe that ANY employee should take a pay-cut when their company is prospering more then ever. (record TV ratings)So what if my boss wants to make HIS company better for the future. It shouldn’t come at the expense of employees. Why take away food off my table when you own the whole buffet? Now doe’s that sound Rational & fair? Case closed !

  141. straitalk says: May 13, 2011 1:47 PM

    eagleswin says:
    May 13, 2011 12:28 PM
    If that’s the way you feel, fine, but the rest of the post is not even pro-player, it’s extremely anti-owner supporter. You aren’t making rational arguments for the players side, you are merely mocking a point of view that is different from yours.
    —-
    You are still missing the point. I’m not against the owners, I’m against a PR campaign perpetuated by some involved party to deliberately misrepresent the fans, who are the only innocent victims in this case.

    Hell, the players could have hired the PR firm in some sort of reverse psychological attack gauged to tick off fans by hyper supporting the owners, but they are just not that smart.

    As a business owner and entrepeneur myself, I know it when I smell it. Others will just have to step in it to understand.

  142. piemasteruk says: May 13, 2011 3:38 PM

    Could people *please* stop bringing politics into this discussion. This whole situation has absolutely nothing to do with democrats or republicans and trying to turn this argument into a partisan one just marks you as one of those idiot armchair politicians who divides the country into good and evil depending on which party they vote for.

    I’m going to assume from now on that anybody who mentions democrats or republicans in this thread is a moron. I don’t think I’ll get many false positives.

  143. puregreed says: May 13, 2011 6:30 PM

    Why do I need NFL football to be a real “football fan?’ A real football fan will walk to his/her local high school and enjoy the game of football.

  144. pigeonpea says: May 13, 2011 7:59 PM

    kindbass says:
    You people need to get it into your skulls that the NFL is not your everyday mom-and-pop business, and analogies along those lines make no sense.

    Why? Because both the owners and players (i.e. “employees”) make obscene amounts of money working in an industry that (unlike say, petroleum production) would not make one iota of difference if it disappeared off the face of the earth tomorrow?

    I never compared the NFL to your local variety store (aka a “mom and pop” type business), but I do compare it to the auto giants and the UAW, or the transportation industry and the Teamsters union. It seems to me that those of you making claims that the NFL is not an “every day business” are the ones likening the players to super heroes and the NFL to some kind of corrupt version of the Justice League of America.

    Guess what? The NFL is a business like any other. Quit trying to make it into something it’s not.

  145. footballrealist says: May 13, 2011 9:39 PM

    I do not want the league to shut things down….BUT

    I also do not want the league to lose its competitive balance.

    I don’t want to miss games…BUT….I also don’t want to lose the draft.

    People a holding the owners accountable for the lockout and for considering a shutdown….

    …the players have decertified, are attacking the draft, free agency rules, etc.

    The owner’s bad choices are of a temporary nature.

    The players are threatening the entire structure of the league.

    So…if a 1 year shut down brings the players to the point that they accept a decently fair deal that will provide long term stability?? Then so be it.

    It worked for the NHL.

  146. axespray says: May 14, 2011 8:11 PM

    I became Pro Owner when Mendenhall mocked the 9/11 victims with his uneducated comments.
    The players are the worst kind of people, 7 plus kids, can’t remember their kid’s names, cheating on pregenent wives, acting like their above the law, mooning hardworking blue collar fans, getting paid 50 million plus for getting fat and becoming a bigger bust than ryan leaf….
    Meanwhile, The owners are probably just flying in jets and living in mansions, but they’re also looking out for the long term interests of the league.

    As a fan, the LONG TERM SURVIVAL OF THE LEAGUE means everything…I could care less if Players only get paid pennies and nickles for their services.

  147. purpleronin says: May 15, 2011 2:47 AM

    I’m not assosiated with the league in any way… but i did just take the Browns to the Superbowl….

  148. pigeonpea says: May 16, 2011 12:05 AM

    purpleronin says:
    I’m not assosiated with the league in any way… but i did just take the Browns to the Superbowl….

    Playing a lot of Madden?

  149. Deb says: May 16, 2011 10:05 AM

    ROFL … how did I miss this article??

    I am not a crook.

    And Aiello is a professional mouthpiece? He should know it’s better to ignore some things than to comment and stir up even more dust.

  150. jpmelon says: May 16, 2011 10:44 AM

    @ hatesycophants

    Just because someone is pro-owner concerning the lockout or the lawsuit doesn’t mean that this person must watch football because they are a fan of the ownership and/or marketing department.

    Some of these people are like me….I realize that I would be a Bills fan no matter who played on the field…..I understand that the players want more money (who doesn’t?) and they are trying to explore every option to make as much as they can. I understand that the ownership made a bad deal for themselves a few years ago and they want to fix it and make more money (neither side was wrong until the negotiating stopped)…….I side with the owners on this issue because the players can be changed and I’ll still be a Bills fan. The players lawsuit would be devastating to my team if it wins and changes the things that keep the game fair.

  151. purpleronin says: May 16, 2011 6:30 PM

    purpleronin says:
    I’m not assosiated with the league in any way… but i did just take the Browns to the Superbowl….
    ————————————————————
    Playing a lot of Madden?
    ——————————————– No I took them to a different kind of superbowl – the porcelain kind

  152. discosucs2005 says: May 16, 2011 6:35 PM

    My comment didn’t get posted, but once again, this could all be solved by looking at the data of who comments and thumbs up and just doing some math.

  153. alphaq2 says: May 17, 2011 9:48 AM

    Wow, PFT is actually blocking pro owner posts now. I guess PFT has to side with the players for fear of not getting interviews.

  154. amr71 says: May 17, 2011 1:23 PM

    OK, you figured me out. I’m actually an owner. No, really, I am. I own a share of the Green Bay Packers.

    But that’s not why I take the owners’ side in this battle. You know what I get as a part-owner of the Packers? The right to attend the annual shareholders’ meeting in Green Bay and vote for the team officers. Basically, I get to hang out and party with other Packer fans once a year, while listening to the guys from the front office give us highlights of the previous year and the outlook for the year ahead. A few Q&A, and then we all go home.

    I get no other benefits as an owner. I get no dividends. I can’t sell my share for a profit. I can’t mount a hostile takeover of the team.

    I hold a share of the Packers because I love the Packers. I love their history and tradition. I love what they represent — the roots of small-town Midwestern pro football, the pure love of the game, and the ability of David to stand toe-to-toe with Goliath … and sometimes even take Goliath down.

    I side with the owners in this fight not because I’m technically an owner. I side with them because under the current NFL system, a small-town team like Green Bay can stand on equal footing with teams from New York, Chicago, Dallas, and Miami. The players’ antitrust suit against the league could undermine all of that. If you have no draft, no salary cap, and no restrictions on player movements, competitive balance — the thing that makes the NFL great — will be gone.

    The Packers have such a huge following that I’m not worried the team would fold. Lambeau Field would still sell out every game. But other small-market teams would be forced to either move or fold. And the small-market teams that did survive would never be competitive, because the big-city teams with the deepest pockets would snatch up the best talent, leaving the scraps for everyone else. I’m old enough to remember when players saw being traded to Green Bay as a punishment — like being exiled to Siberia. No one wanted to go there because it was cold and remote, and there’s nothing to do in Green Bay. Well, it’s still cold and remote in Green Bay, and there’s still nothing to do there, but the Packers can still attract top talent because they can win. And the only reason they can win is because of the league’s competitive balance.

    If some people want to watch a league where only the Cowboys, Redskins, Giants, Jets, and Bears have a shot at the title every year, be my guest. But I sure won’t be interested anymore. The any-given-Sunday appeal of the NFL is a huge part of what makes it the greatest sport in America. We all like to say we’re diehard fans of our teams, but honestly, how many of us would stick around if we knew there was no chance our teams could ever win it all?

    The players keep saying they want to see the books. Well, as a publicly held organization, the Packers’ books are open for anyone to see. And they tell the story: Even in a period of record revenue for the league, their profits keep going down every year, while player costs keep going up. That is the crux of the issue, and that’s what the owners want to try to fix.

    I don’t pretend that the owners are perfect. I have no love for the likes of Jerry Jones (who would be perfectly happy undermining the league’s competitive balance as long as the Cowboys succeeded) and Dan Snyder (what kind of tool sues his own fans?). Also, the owners should have pushed back on the last CBA, rather than sign on to a raw deal (although I blame Tagliabue for that as much as anyone else). But I do believe that the owners, as the ones who put their investments on the line, are more concerned about the long-term financial health of the league than most of the players are.

    The players already have a good deal in place, and that’s part of the reason they’re fighting. They don’t want to give up the sweetheart terms they got in the last CBA. But the fact is, the terms of that CBA aren’t in the best long-term interests of the league. The players will be here and gone in a matter of a few years, but the franchises they played for will live on. The players seem to have forgotten that.

  155. schemefactory says: May 17, 2011 9:16 PM

    other sites are way different: http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/polls

  156. forthelove says: May 17, 2011 10:26 PM

    It’s totally crazy to me all of the pro owner posts and comments, too. People who make these comments are often over simplistic, ‘i understand their argument’, or ‘why should the players get more money’, or ‘revenues are down’

    The fact is that 30 out of 32 owners agreed to the cba that they subsequently opted out of. Theyre asking the players to take LESS money. And refused to negotiate at all until weeks before the deadline even though they knew for TWO YEARS they were going to opt out.

    And no, league revenues are not down, in fact they are up. It is the growth rate that slowed – and we only know this about the GB Packers cause they’re the only ones that have to open their books. We have to take the owners word that every other team’s revenues are down. So to clarify, during the Great Recession, when companies across the US saw profits fall precipitously, the NFL not only held solid, but revenues GREW, albeit not as much %-age wise as previous years.

    Full disclosure, I’m not a player nor do I have any relationship to them. Just a fan who knows it’s more complicated than a sound bite.

  157. comeonnowguys says: May 18, 2011 9:32 AM

    So again, it sounds like:

    Pro-player comments: Truth to power
    Pro-league comments: NFL-backed propaganda campaign.

    Yup, totally plausible.

    Maybe the fact that pro-league posts are getting rated up–you know, aside from the fact people just may be crazy enough to agree with them–is the fact that those same comments often call your site out on this needless battle you’re determined to fight.

    I’d say more, but I have to run to the bank and cash this check from R. Goodell.

  158. southmo says: May 19, 2011 10:13 AM

    I guess they could go poll some presidential voters again and get more of a pro-player stance if it makes them feel better.

    I joined because when you read the comments supporting the players that are devoid of business sense or any factual basis, like the one above saying the players would have to take LESS money… (no they won’t actually)… it makes you WANT to comment.

    ain’t that cool?

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