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Here’s how a deal can be done, now

NFL And Players Resume Mediation Getty Images

This isn’t speculation.  This isn’t a hypothesis.  This is fact.

The NFLPA* is ready to do a deal.  The NFLPA* is ready to commit to reformulating the union.  But the NFLPA* doesn’t believe that it can be done without signed union cards.

And it won’t take two weeks to get the signed union cards.  The NFLPA* is willing to agree to the proposed settlement and to commit to reforming as a union.  The NFLPA* simply wants to wait until camps open to physically collect the cards.

The problem is that the NFLPA* believes that NFL lawyer Bob Batterman (pictured) is demanding that the owners require the NFLPA* to immediately reconstitute.  And for the same reason that some owners think NFLPA* lawyer Jeffrey Kessler wants to blow up the deal, the NFLPA* now thinks Batterman wants to blow up the deal.

This one is simple.  And the league needs to agree to it.  Commissioner Roger Goodell and NFLPA* executive director DeMaurice Smith now trust each other.  Goodell needs only to trust Smith for a week.  Smith got the signatures needed to shut down the union, and he’ll get the signatures on the union cards to put it back together.

So while we’ve been making plenty of pleas to the players lately, he’s an open plea to the NFL.  The players want to do this deal, but they want to do it their way.  Let them do it their way, and a deal will be done.

NFL, the ball is in your court.

UPDATE:  Based on what we’re currently hearing from the league, it looks like the NFL is willing to agree to those terms.  Though it’s too early to declare that a done deal is coming, we’re finally moving in that direction.

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63 Responses to “Here’s how a deal can be done, now”
  1. vysethelegend says: Jul 21, 2011 3:41 PM

    It can be done now by signing the damn thing too.

  2. revengeofthefilthymcnasty says: Jul 21, 2011 3:42 PM

    LET’S GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. berniemadoffsides says: Jul 21, 2011 3:42 PM

    Have each team’s player rep contact his respective teammates, have the e-mails sent in today (Unless someone’s in space, this can happen by 5pm), and have the cards overnighted tomorrow… what’s the problem?

  4. superdanlp says: Jul 21, 2011 3:42 PM

    This disagreement is stupid but I am all for doing whatever it takes to get this deal done today.

  5. brownsfn says: Jul 21, 2011 3:44 PM

    Why do the players always have to get “their” way…it is kind of sickening…like little babies, they stomp their feet and pout until they get their little way…disgusting…

    Why don’t they stop and think for a moment of all of the other people in this country (union and non union) who are taking huge paycuts and losing their jobs…that just doesn’t matter to these d-bags…

  6. bpfpft says: Jul 21, 2011 3:44 PM

    Mike:

    Isn’t the NFLPA process of re-forming the union procedural? So there is no potential reluctance to re-form the union it’s just the manner in which to get it done? Can’t they simply collect 50% + 1 emails today and then collect signed union cards at start of TC so both parties are satisfied?

  7. bobwhitequail says: Jul 21, 2011 3:45 PM

    Opening camps etc. with no union could open up the NFL to be sued for antitrust violations. Your solution may be exactly what Kessler wants to happen. ?

  8. Southpaw says: Jul 21, 2011 3:45 PM

    You guys should take a breath until you get a concise stance going on… not much has changed in the past 30 mins, yet there are like five articles going in every direction

  9. steelernfl says: Jul 21, 2011 3:45 PM

    Here is how the deal gets done. CANCEL PRESEASON AND HALF OF THE REGULAR SEASON !!!!!!!!!!! See what happens next when the players arent working.

  10. dequan81 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:46 PM

    Mike, I am begging you, please stop.

  11. clayjayhawk says: Jul 21, 2011 3:46 PM

    I also think that monkees are flying out of my butt

  12. TheNaturalMevs says: Jul 21, 2011 3:46 PM

    Bla, bla, bla. And then some.

    So, so tired of reading this stupid jargon that revolves around minuscule details. Make a new post when it’s a done deal and there is something new to talk about. Until then give yourself a few days off with a cold drink in your hand underneath the sun. Really.

  13. superdanlp says: Jul 21, 2011 3:47 PM

    Also, in the previous article it states that “reforming the union is a personal decision blah blah”…but now 16 minutes later this article states as fact “The NFLPA* is ready to commit to reformulating the union.”

    So whats the deal here? Are they willing to reform or are they still thinking about it?

  14. trbowman says: Jul 21, 2011 3:47 PM

    I’m tired of these chumps. Bring on the replacement players!

  15. bobwhitequail says: Jul 21, 2011 3:48 PM

    We all know that the union can recertify within one day with no problem at all so no point in trying to get a solution that gives them 2 weeks.

    We appreciate the creativity to suggest a solution and we are all frustrated but they simply do not need the 2 weeks. There is more going on here obviously because they can do it in one day if they wanted. “They don’t need no sticking cards” Giving them 2 weeks gives Kessler what he wants. His true motives for the 2 weeks? Yet to be revealed…

  16. sirribbit says: Jul 21, 2011 3:48 PM

    If they don’t finish this today, we have to somehow “strike” against the league, both the Players and the NFL.

    We could just not buy any merchandise from these greedy people. Buy you’re girlfriend or kid something, but nothing more. Hit them where they’ll feel it, in the bank account.

  17. descendency says: Jul 21, 2011 3:48 PM

    Do whatever it take to get football on the field (permanently). Please.

  18. jersey73 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:48 PM

    How come they could decertify in what seemed like a matter of seconds…but it is so convoluted to re-certify???

  19. capslockkey says: Jul 21, 2011 3:49 PM

    Whatever it takes. Just add a line in the CBA that says, “this agreement is null and void if there is no certified union representation by whatever date” and the lockout goes back on immediately if Smith and Company try and pull a fast one.

  20. grpatriot says: Jul 21, 2011 3:49 PM

    Think we’re headed back to court???

  21. RussianBreadMaker says: Jul 21, 2011 3:49 PM

    This is getting so old.

  22. upperdecker19 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:50 PM

    Offer the flock of carrier pidgeons and incentive plan for 24 hour delivery

  23. zerored78 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:50 PM

    bobwhitequail says: Jul 21, 2011 3:45 PM

    Opening camps etc. with no union could open up the NFL to be sued for antitrust violations. Your solution may be exactly what Kessler wants to happen. ?

    ______________________________

    You don’t open camp. You invite the players to the same place training camp will occur to vote. Then, once the NFLPA has verified they have enough votes to reconstitute the union, camp starts.

  24. capslockkey says: Jul 21, 2011 3:50 PM

    I guess I should have known that Count Dooku was behind all this.

  25. tonyinmd says: Jul 21, 2011 3:51 PM

    Why should the league open itself up to all the legal ramifications over trust?

    Trust has ruined MANY lives…the common sense thing to do is to have the players sign the damn cards and fax them back…it would take 10 minutes for most of the players to do so.

    Why the players NEED to have this done on thier terms is rediculous.

    Its as dumb as Goddell telling De to “trust us, we won’t lock you out if you sit and continue to negotiate” during those last meetings in March when they decertified. De CYA then and Goddell and the league are CYA now.

    Really I don’t totally care how it gets done as long as it does shortly, but I could totally understand why the league would tell the players to kick rocks with this…its just not legally wise to “trust” the other party with something that could open yourself up to financial and legal ramifications.

  26. crooza172 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:51 PM

    I’m getting a headache.

  27. silverhornet says: Jul 21, 2011 3:51 PM

    Is a player saying “yes” on twitter legally binding?

  28. thephantomstranger says: Jul 21, 2011 3:52 PM

    I trust everybody! Just do it!

  29. macc719 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:52 PM

    For every day the union delays decrease their share of the money pie by 1%.

  30. johnnyb216 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:52 PM

    I’m just going to shut all this down until I hear about a training camp opening. I am soooo fed up with all these BS delays. These two sides obviously don’t trust eachother.

  31. big007hed says: Jul 21, 2011 3:53 PM

    Why does the NFL have to cave in again? The players are acting like petulant little kids crying for everything until the parent caves and gives it to them…. Quit finding excuses NFLPA* and do the d@mn thing

  32. dsnuts79 says: Jul 21, 2011 3:54 PM

    WE WANT FOOTBALL!!!
    WE WANT FOOTBALL!!!
    WE WANT FOOTBALL!!!

  33. RussianBreadMaker says: Jul 21, 2011 3:55 PM

    So much for July 21st

  34. blantoncollier says: Jul 21, 2011 3:55 PM

    In normal circumstances, you do a deal that is contingent on the NLFPA reforming. However
    the league doesnt trust Kessler. Remember Kessler’s son is an agent. By forcing the issue of reforming the NFLPA now, it takes Kessler’s ability to talk to players and agents out of the equation. Since Dee hasnt shown he can control Kessler, the NFL has a reason to be concerned. Once they start with Free Agency and signing Draft Picks–its a whole new world.

  35. 123makarov says: Jul 21, 2011 3:56 PM

    bobwhitequail:

    “Opening camps etc. with no union could open up the NFL to be sued for antitrust violations. Your solution may be exactly what Kessler wants to happen. ?”

    The owners are being sued now. Antitrust lawsuits go away once the union reforms.

    If the union doesn’t reform as expected, owners could reinstate the lockout any time.

    Only thing holding a deal up seems owners’ insistence the union reform before the lockout ends.

  36. pastorinisflak says: Jul 21, 2011 3:57 PM

    So now we’re going from the owners locking out the players to what essentially could be compared to a player strike??

    I’m just about ready to throw in the towel.

  37. kevinfromphilly says: Jul 21, 2011 3:58 PM

    Brownsfn,

    Are you serious? How is this an example of the players pouting? They have to vote to recertify, repeat HAVE TO. Asking for a week to get the cards signed is just them asking to do it in a way that makes it easier for a deal to get done sooner – repeat SOONER. I guess I shouldn’t expect much from a Browns fan that can’t spell his user name “brownsfan”, but come on dude! Work on your reading comprehension before you post again.

  38. evilfonzie says: Jul 21, 2011 3:59 PM

    MIKE,

    I just want to say thank you on behalf of every fan, player and owner who is checking this site for updates during this 12th hour.

    I truly believe you have affected this strife and will continue to do so. Keep pressing!

  39. klunge says: Jul 21, 2011 3:59 PM

    bobwhitequail says:
    Jul 21, 2011 3:45 PM
    Opening camps etc. with no union could open up the NFL to be sued for antitrust violations. Your solution may be exactly what Kessler wants to happen. ?
    —————————————–
    Exactly my thought. “Open the doors and let us back into the facilty to work first, THEN we’ll recertify and accept the deal!” Are you kidding me? The only thing close to this I would endorse if I were the NFL is everyone show up at camp with signed card in hand, and when enough signed cards are collected then let them in to work. This cheap ploy could theoretically lead to hundreds more suits by players.

  40. jaywhitelending says: Jul 21, 2011 3:59 PM

    UM…ever heard of E-Signatures?

  41. wasafan says: Jul 21, 2011 3:59 PM

    Why is this a BAD way to get this done? Because if the NFL doesn’t require the union be recertified and open up the league year, it is going to be very difficult to try to put the lockout back in place if the Union and Kessler decide NOT to recertify. No Recert = No CBA. No CBA = No Lifting of Lockout.

  42. thephantomstranger says: Jul 21, 2011 4:00 PM

    It’s always darkest before the dawn.

    Actually, scratch that. It’s always darkest in the middle of the night. It keeps getting lighter and lighter until it’s officially dawn.

  43. ebenezergrymm says: Jul 21, 2011 4:00 PM

    “This one is simple. And the league needs to agree to it. Commissioner Roger Goodell and NFLPA* executive director DeMaurice Smith now trust each other. Goodell needs only to trust Smith for a week.”

    Are you NUTS? It’s not about the league trusting DSmith, it’s about the league trusting Kessler. They don’t and shouldn’t.

    Players should recertify. Now.

  44. yem123 says: Jul 21, 2011 4:00 PM

    Let’s blow up Batterman and Kessler, then have a game to celebrate!

  45. oldbrowndawg says: Jul 21, 2011 4:00 PM

    This is such a CROCK!!!!! As has previously been posted, the lawyers are doing their best to screw this deal up. Time to toss them all out of both the rooms and VOTE.

  46. tumtum1288 says: Jul 21, 2011 4:01 PM

    Already preparing myself to be let down by another prediction. Same old story same old song and dance my friends. Players need to get their head out of their hind parts and realize that when the NFL loses some money, they will be willing to take away some of the players money with regular season games. It’s suppose to be an agreement not one side winning over the other.

  47. atmedic8daily says: Jul 21, 2011 4:02 PM

    I’ll smoke to that!!!

  48. powderedme says: Jul 21, 2011 4:04 PM

    A done deal : fans :: bare feet : Rex Ryan

  49. nineroutsider says: Jul 21, 2011 4:07 PM

    A deal is coming this week (most likely today)…trust me.

  50. mj5150 says: Jul 21, 2011 4:07 PM

    here’s how it should work- the owners tell the NFLPA-we have an agreement-you have until midnight on Friday to get the signatures (mail,electronic-etc) from the players -otherwise you will be locked out for the whole season-
    while i dont want to go a whole season without the NFL-it’s time to give some ultimatums-everyone is acting to nicey nicey-get it done!!

  51. nflfan101 says: Jul 21, 2011 4:09 PM

    If the NFLPA/NFLPA* wants physical signed cards, then email every player a card and make cards available to every player rep, tell the players to print out the card on their computers, sign the card and to either take it to a local player rep or send it via overnight mail.

    In this day and age, getting a physically signed document is easy and anyone who isn’t willing to make an effort to sign and return a document is simply either (1) lying about signing a document or (2) just being a a–hole.

    The argument that you have to send out a card by regular mail and have it returned by regular mail is bogus and pure BS.

    If I were an owner (I wouldn’t be writing this because I would be in Atlanta), I would not trust the NFLPA/NFLPA* to do anything, especially something that could cost me millions or billions of dollars if they didn’t do it.

  52. rm10038 says: Jul 21, 2011 4:10 PM

    I don’t know about anyone else, i have been really put off by this whole process. I really am at the point of not caring who is dragging thier feet, who is trying to out manuver who. None of the players or owners care one bit about me or anyone of the millions of footballs fans. I am not going rant about how angry i am about this situation, because i am not, i am tired of it, for me, i think i will spend my sundays at the park with my kids instead of infront of the TV watching football. Eventually this mess will get settled the billionaire owners will get thier billions, the millioniare players will get thier millions and life will go on, but as for me, i will not be watching or keeping score. Life is to short, there are better things i could be doing with my life the concerning myself with the NFL. Those of you who feel the same, just spend the time with your kids(if you have any) or find something else productive to do. Maybe if enough people find something else to do on sunday, the NFL might get it.

  53. marthisdil says: Jul 21, 2011 4:10 PM

    I’m sorry, but the NFLPA has their little chunk of change sitting in the bank. They could have flown in enough players to get a vote, in person, so the deal could be done, right now.

    Don’t even consider that ALL of the players playing in the league make more money than a majority of the country….

    No excuse.

  54. brownsfan4life says: Jul 21, 2011 4:15 PM

    All the stuff is so garbage…. I cant even guess how many people have checked here all day for the past 4 months. We love our dang football so much that we are willing to listen to people fight over the smallest things. I never thought I would say this but I am about done. I cant keep reading thats its close and then how far apart everything is. Give me college football and freakin arena league…. Thats about the only way I will see some football. I would rather watch Brett favre be a media junkie all over again!

  55. bobwhitequail says: Jul 21, 2011 4:20 PM

    We need to find Kessler’s motivation for the extra 2 weeks. Find that, and everything will be clear. Mike is up to the job!

    I have to repeat a huge thanks from another poster above. Thanks for your hard work Mike in exposing these scoundrels. They are taking everyone for a ride and we all need to educate ourselves. Much appreciated!

  56. greenbay4ever says: Jul 21, 2011 4:28 PM

    I hope when it’s time to renew the CBA in ten years that they get a head start and don’t put the fans through this again but something tells it will be worse.

  57. hawkeye6 says: Jul 21, 2011 4:37 PM

    Stupid lockout

  58. vetdana says: Jul 21, 2011 4:55 PM

    Kessler knows all about E-mail and his office, no doubt, uses it all of the time to get timely documents signed.

    This is a deliberate stall with an agenda to stop union re-certification….kill the deal …..and proceed to litigate……..and.. it really STINKS !!

    I am really tired !….just about done…. with all of this !!

  59. xinellum says: Jul 21, 2011 5:04 PM

    Lombardi is on tv saying that these guys know what they have to do but It sounds like at the end of it all someone is looking around and saying,
    “Did you send out those union cards?”
    “Union cards?”
    “Yeah, the ones we need to recertify.”
    “Weren’t you going to do that?”
    “No, I thought you were going to do that.”
    “No, you were supposed to.”
    “Oops.”
    “Think we can convince the owners to let us borrow their facilities to take the vote?”
    “I don’t know, lets give Roger a call.”
    Knowing the NFLPA, I can honestly say that this is more likely than not. How can you get this close and not have a mechanism im place to take a vote and your solution is to see if the owners will do it for you. The NFLPA and their lawyers are pathetic.

  60. ronin36 says: Jul 21, 2011 5:07 PM

    With the money they’ve blown on lawyers and hotels and traveling over the last few months…

    They could afford have some high-priced accounting firm, present at every training camp. (Or a nearby hotel. if players aren’t allowed into the facilities.)

    The players come in, vote on everything, and the the ballets tallied….

    It’d take a matter of hours.. Not days.

    Done deal…

    But heck.. lawyers are paid to make simple things complicated. (Sorry Mike)

  61. xinellum says: Jul 21, 2011 5:20 PM

    I want to add that we could still open camps on Monday. Make players report to camp on Monday and bring their union voting card voting yea or nay. Once each team’s players reps have 50%+1 of the players yea votes then they report that and when all 32 teams have reported then the union has the cards in hand and can reconstitute. That could be completed by about 10:00 AM. This is just a bargaining chip, period. Give us this one last thing or we will drag this out. Owners should vote and make the approval valid for only 48 hours and let the players chew on that.

  62. jbeatzz says: Jul 21, 2011 5:42 PM

    you people sound like lil babies like wahhh im so sick of this im not gonna watch …yeahhh right youll watch and youll love it because theyre the best at what they do on the gridiron…its a labor negotiation, it happens and the more money thats involved the more complicated the negotiation process is…i just want them to get it over with so we can get things rollin…at least its almost done, better now than the way it was when they had to use replacement players

    these people are in a unique situation where the players and the teams are the product of a multi billion dollar industry…if you had the ability to negotiate your salary wouldnt you? you dont just take what they give you if you dont have to…you fight for what you can get and set up your family for generations to where none of them will ever have to worry about unemployment, ever…its not like the money isnt there

    people complain about how much players make…what about the owners??? these guys dont do too much but make billions and raise ticket prices yet noone complains about them…im all for the players getting what they can out of those same owners who charge us full price to watch a preseason game. i just want the league back

  63. bobwhitequail says: Jul 21, 2011 5:43 PM

    re: ” Lombardi is on tv saying that these guys know what they have to do but It sounds like at the end of it all someone is looking around and saying,
    “Did you send out those union cards?”

    Kessler is a lot of things (in fact just about any adjective describing evil or the lowest forms of life on the planet would be accurate) but he’s not stupid. They didn’t just “forget” that they have to recertify. That notion is completely idiotic and illustrates why Kessler is able to manipulate players and people who are not thinking for temselves.

    Mike has already described in detail how the NFL lawyers lined out how they could quickly recertify weeks ago. Did they suddenly “forget” that too? Come on.

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