NFLPA issues warning on unlicensed trading card companies

The NFLPA handles a wide variety of licensing rights for players, including deals with approved trading-card companies, official jersey sales, and appearances in the Madden video game.  Though players aren’t required to participate in the union’s group licensing program, most do.  (Perhaps the most notable exception is former NFL linebacker LaVar Arrington, who was known in multiple editions of the Madden franchise simply as “Linebacker.”)

The NFLPA currently has concern that unlicensed trading-card companies are trying to intercept incoming players with deals that could jeopardize their ability to participate in the group licensing program.  As a result, the union has sent a memo to all agents warning them of these efforts.

“Participation in the NFLPA’s group licensing program presents far more opportunities, and money, than what these unlicensed trading card companies are offering your clients,” the memo states.  “It is our understanding that, not surprisingly, the unlicensed trading card companies are failing to disclose to players and/or their representatives the full ramifications of agreeing to such deals.  It is up to you, as your client’s representative, to provide him with all of the relevant information and to safeguard his licensing and marketing opportunities.”

While the NFLPA has a clear interest in avoiding the dilution of its mass-marketing muscle by getting as many incoming players as possible to join in the group licensing program, the incoming players need to realize that they could be hurting their ability to do so by cutting their own deals.  In the end, each player needs to make his own decision; it’s important, however, that he do so with full information and appreciation of the benefits and potential detriments.

6 responses to “NFLPA issues warning on unlicensed trading card companies

  1. I wonder how much the players actually get from the NFLPA deals. Look at how much more Jordan made for himself staying out of the NBA video games and all that. Granted he is a superstar and the sport is different, but I bet some of the NFL’s stars could make if they copyrighted their names and likenesses or whatever Jordan did.

    Could you imagine how pissed EA would be if they had to make Aaron Rodgers or AP just Quarterback and Runningback after paying all that money to screw over all the other companies that could make a better game?

  2. My question is this, yes the NFL gives the players some money for signing up, but didn’t I read that Adrian Peterson only saw $10,000 from his jersey sales? And he is one of the top selling jerseys in the league. And now these rookies are slotted for salary. So how much more can they get on their own? Or maybe get together will all the other rookies at the mandatory rookie symposium and threaten to sign en-mass with another company. See what the league does when they are threatened with losing a whole rookie class of players who won’t let them use their likeness. Just my .02

  3. You’re a kicker. You get a $274.98 check each year from NFLPA sales. Whatever you do.. don’t jeopardize that!

  4. This is a way to help pay the saleries of union officals and spreading the wealth among those players that don’t get the name recognition. Spread the wealth…take from those who produce for those who don’t… where have I heard that before…Politics maybe? Come on democraps, jump in here and tell us how it is should be:-)

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