Bears’ Gould blasts owners’ greed, has no sympathy for players who don’t save their money


Robbie Gould, the Bears’ kicker and the team’s NFLPA* representative, says the lockout has a very simple cause: The owners, including the McCaskey family that owns the Bears, are greedy.

“Look, fans don’t buy tickets to see Virginia or Brian McCaskey,” Gould told the Chicago Tribune. “They pay to watch Brian Urlacher, Drew Brees and all the great players. This lockout is all because of the owners’ greed. I’m sorry if that sounds cold, but it is the truth.”

Gould is one of the many players who have bristled at the way the labor dispute has been labeled as “millionaires vs. billionaires,” noting that not every NFL player is a millionaire. Gould does say, however, that every NFL player makes enough money that they could have been saving up to prepare for losing paychecks this year, and he doesn’t feel sorry for the players who didn’t do that.

“I have been saving my money for this lockout for three years,” he said. “We have known it was probably coming and we were advised to save our money. I know a lot of guys who prepared for this and are fine. The guys who didn’t plan for it, that is their fault.”

But the lockout itself, Gould thinks, is the owners’ fault.

64 responses to “Bears’ Gould blasts owners’ greed, has no sympathy for players who don’t save their money

  1. “Look, fans don’t buy tickets to see Virginia or Brian McCaskey,” Gould told the Chicago Tribune. “They pay to watch Brian Urlacher, Drew Brees and all the great players. This lockout is all because of the owners’ greed. I’m sorry if that sounds cold, but it is the truth.”


    What can one say? He hit the nail on the proverbial head. He was nice enough not to mention that these folks also INHERITED their golden goose.

  2. Great to lay your bosses under the bus real smart.. when it comes to a new contract see who will come pleading for a new contract

  3. Wow. He thinks the owners, the ones taking on all of the financial risk when they and operate this BUSINESS are the greedy ones? HA! These players are a joke. I know it’s unlikely and improbable, but I am 100% for replacement players. I am confident the great coaches can have them playing at a decent level in no time.

    Let these greedy players find work elsewhere, and see how quickly they realize how nice they have it.

  4. A player rep ripping the owners for being greedy and ripping other players for weakening their own bargaining power by not preparing properly for a lockout. Not exactly newsworthy.

  5. Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures, the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge, has marked the upward surge of mankind and greed, you mark my words, will not only save the NFL, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the U.S.A.

  6. Whenever I begin to think that I might want to listen to what a kicker has to say, I try to remind myself that Peton Manning knew just how to respond to them…

  7. so then you are ok with your own greed? conflict of interest in your statement.
    I would switch my allegiance if the players contributed to the investment the owners are making FINANCIALLY!
    FACT: if the owners fold up and take their stadiums elsewhere, You are flipping hamburgers.

  8. So the player thinks it’s the owners fault and the owner thinks it’s the players fault?… shocker

  9. would be nice if this came from a Cowboys player that blasted the Jones family and their collective take in terms of payroll each year (Jerry and what, 3 of his kids?).

  10. Players should feel free to start up their own league, build their own stadiums, and deal with all the costs (whatever they may be) associated with running a Pro football team. That way they can pay themselves whatever they want. Let me know how that works out for you.

  11. And the players who refused to negotiate, or counter offer, when the owners put an offer on the table, what is their role in this??

  12. Anybody who doesn’t know the owners are greedy is, frankly, BLIND. It’s obvious. Everybody has greed by nature, it’s just a matter of whether you choose to reject it, control it, or give it free reign.

    BUT, contrary to Robbie Gould’s moronic opinion, it’s not just the owners who are greedy. It’s also the players, who were both greedy and stupid to push through the deal in ’06.

    And it’s not just greed. It’s also fear. Fear on the owners part of losing control, ending up with an overbearing union that merely has to go “jump” and they all ask “how high?” much like the UAW did for Detroit. Fear on the players part that if they give an inch they risk setting a precedent for further rollbacks later. Fear on the owners part of airing whatever little bits of excess profit they actually do sneak into the books under the radar (for it’s very likely they do). Fear on the players part that if they give in to blood testing their dirty secrets will get exposed (for again it’s likely there are some here too).

    The fear is what’s making this such a nasty fight with such dug-in, intransigent, hard-nosed attack mentalities. If it weren’t for the FEAR, we’d have had a deal three months ago. The greed was merely what got the mess started.

  13. Yaaay another jerk. He forgot to mention the 1-200 greedy players that this deal is ultimately going to affect. Screw the rest of the 1700 guys and the fans as long as Gayton and Drew get their 30 mil a year.

    The owners own the team. They have a right to every bit of money their BUSINESS earns. Socialism is ruining football. Disband the NFL, play a season of exhibitions and pay them minimum wage.

    “Saving for 3 years”
    Every week it sounds like the players have known all along they weren’t going to take any deal offered but one in reflectance of the current ridiculous percentage. This end around NFLPA crap is really annoying.

  14. Greed is a bottomless pit which exhausts the person in an endless effort to satisfy the need without ever reaching satisfaction. — Erich Fromm

  15. Gotta agree with him regarding players who didn’t save. If you tell anyone with common sense to start saving up their money becase in x amount of years, you potential won’t have a paycheck coming in, they would. I’m pretty sure at the beginning of last season about everyone who follows the sport knew the NFL was heading toward a lockout. Plenty of time to get something in the bank and start making plans accordingly.

    Now the rest of the story regarding the lockout and who’s fault it is…I won’t go there.

  16. No, it isn’t the truth, Robbie. It’s the talking point you’ve had drilled into you.

    Here is the truth, as Kevin Mawae and Richie Incognito have acknowledged – the players tricked the owners into signing a CBA that cost the teams too much; economic reality has intruded on the league, and the owners needed to redo the deal. That players do not handle their finances well is true, but it’s economic reality turned into a crisis because of DeMaurice Smith.

  17. I’m glad to know the players aren’t motivated by greed at all. The fact is, the owners agreed to a bad deal in the last CBA and now they’re exercising their right to opt out of it. They’re running a business and they want to get a certain return on their investment. People who are jealous of the money these people have call it “greed,” but each side is just trying to get the best deal they can for themselves. Unless the NFLPA is a charity, I don’t think they’re being any less greedy.

  18. Wow….Another player blaming it all on the owners…..I’m shocked!

    “They pay to watch Brian Urlacher, Drew Brees and all the great players.”

    Uhhhhh, no. I pay to see my team. Players come and go but the TEAM is what I choose to support! If the players had gotten the short end of the stick on the previous CBA, they would have opted out just as the owners had a right to do (and did.)! Despite the protestations of the players, THEY were the ones that walked away from mediation and filed a lawsuit in March, leaving the owners NO CHOICE but to implement the lockout.

  19. Robbie gould is a moron. There would be no team to see without the owners and frankly no NFL. Everytime a player speaks he sounds like a total idiot and I lose some more desire to watch the NFL, I am glad none of my 49ers are this stupid.

  20. “Look, fans don’t buy tickets to see Virginia or Brian McCaskey,” Gould told the Chicago Tribune. “They pay to watch Brian Urlacher, Drew Brees and all the great players. This lockout is all because of the owners’ greed. I’m sorry if that sounds cold, but it is the truth.”

    -And who is it exactly that give people like Urlacher, Brees, and Gould the chance to play a sport for a national audience? oh right, the McCaskey’s and other slave owners.

  21. Aren’t the players holding out for more money which by definition makes them greedy as well?

    And with Gould saving his money for the last 3 years tells me that the players were really committed to getting a deal done.

  22. Earth to Gould: fans watch the Bears not you or Uhrlacher. They watched before you were there and will watch after. We need the teams and their owners to remain solvent with competitive league rules to remain in place so we can continue to enjoy watching. Calling the other side greedy isn’t helping your case.

  23. The fans also don’t want to shell out for a ticket, parking and food to watch a player the owners choose to help the team and were busts. Thes so called I deserve the big pucks and glamor in my past. Ask Washington fans what they feel about a certain defensive player that has done nothing but take there money and produce nothing on the field. Players have become such pre madonna’s they think they run the show. Players come and go the NFL has survived after many who have ferlt they make the game.

  24. I’m inclined to agree with him. The league minimum salary is $400k or so right?

    Anyone that managed their money with any sort of responsibility knowing that there was an impending lockout should easily be able to live at least 4-5 years comfortably on that.

  25. Gould is right about the owners but he left out that all people are greedy. The players leave their teams they started with when they receive free agency, why “more money, greed” why did Adam the insider leave the NFL Network for ESPN, more money, greed. I do not know of a person that would not leave their present job if a better offer came their way. He is right, it is greed but it is not just the owners.

  26. He’s partially correct. We do pay to go see the players on our team, however 10 years from now the players will have changed but the team is still OUR TEAM. The players are interchangable. They follow the money. We follow our team.

  27. I love how a kicker, who sits on their ass for 95% of a game is complaining! The players say they aren’t all “millionaires” but think all the owners are “billionaires”. I think when the owners told the players that they wouldn’t understand the financials, they were correct. Apparently the players don’t understand the difference between the top line and the bottom line.

    I am not saying the owners don’t have money, but most of them have earned their money from their outside business: Bob Kraft – Paper Company, Paul Allen – Microsoft, Dan Synder – 6 Flags. Last time I checked I didnt see Robbie Gould developing Windows 7 or manning the rides at 6 Flags!

    Goes to show that it cost a lot of money to go to Penn State but the education seems sub par!!

  28. Well its good know it is just the owners who are greedy and not the players. Thanks Robbie for helping me understand. That only the players are allowed to max out there pay and the owners should just be thankful that players are willing to play for them. I mean most of us are loyal to the players and follow them from team to team right? instead of following the team and the players as they come and go.

  29. From a public relations standpoint, some players can’t seem to understand that the more they talk, the less sympathetic fans are likely to be. To my knowledge, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning haven’t publicly said so much as a peep about this labor dispute. Nothing. Niente. Nada. Why? Because that’s the smart play. I’m reminded here of the idiomatic expression: “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.”

  30. What I like is that he says he has been saving since they signed the last contract. A telling sign that they knew it was skewed way in the players favor.

  31. As if the players weren’t expected to strike when they elected Smith. All knew Smith wanted to decertify; owners had to respond as they did.

    I’ve been an eagle fan since the ’40s when the players had to have part time jobs. They stuck with it and helped make the game what it is. Time to remember the roots on both sides. Without owners there would be no pro/semi pro ball and without players there would be no game.

    I think it is time to lock them all in a small cramped room, lock the door and only let food in. Absolutely no outside contact. Maybe there would be a CBA in a couple days; if not I’ll have better things to do on SUNDAYS. (about the draft, why should I watch something that has the season turned on end. No free agency, I would rather see what my team has planned then see what they do in the draft. So no, won’t pay attention)

  32. I’d love it if the league could somehow move on from these players but still be allowed to implement the rules that makes the game great.

    I’d watch anyone at this point. If these players don’t want to be the ones I’m watching, then get a new crop.

  33. He’s right, of course, but I hope they cut him, and the Packers sign him.

    I hate Chicago, but Robbie “Elliot” Gould is money.

  34. If the players want to make the money the owners make have them go to school, get educated, take the risk and start a business or multiple business then take a leap of faith and buy a franchise. The players are employees…..if they dont like the deal they are getting find another job. Its the owners that are taking 100 percent of the risk…..NOT the players.

  35. Yeah, it’s just the owners that are greedy. The players could care less how much they get paid. This whole litigation they are championing is simply about about working conditions and getting new vending machines in the employee lounge.

  36. Well, by the sounds of what I have read the NFL players are trying to put the NFL on the same playing field as the MLB. For example, they don’t want any salary cap, they don’t want any free agency restrictions, they are even claiming the NFL draft should be illegal! For god sake owners please just shove it up the players a**.

    Just another example of a union not knowing their place in society.

  37. Hard to argue with Gould’s take on the players who didn’t save. And here’s the thing: players aren’t even missing any money right now and are still needing/wanting help or handouts. If they can’t survive an offseason where the wouldn’t be getting paid anyways, they’re screwed.

  38. Hey Mike maybe it’s time to do the blame poll again with an option for “disenchanted fan due to constant b.s. from both sides”. I’m so tired of this b.s that my pulse barely raised when the schedule came out. I love football, it’s a great escape from the grind of the week but you know what, I’ll find something else. The owners with their disingeneous “We just want to negotiate (but only where,when, and how we want to negotiate)” and the players “We aren’t really millionaires (but we play a friggin GAME for hundreds of thousands of dollars”.

    F the both of you. I’m sick of it.

  39. Sorry, but Robbie’s wrong. I pay to watch the Dallas Cowboys play football. Doesn’t matter who owns them. Doesn’t matter who plays for them. Owners come and go. Players come and go. It’s the team and the football that I watch.

    I continue to be interested in some players when they move on (Flozell Adams for instance), and a truely great player can be fun to watch (like Peyton Manning). But I never watched a Stellers or Colts game over a Cowboys game last year.

  40. Hey if the players don’t like it they can play arena ball, UFL or play in Canada. No sympathy here at all.

  41. I’m a diehard Packers fan, so I take any opportunity I can to disparage the Bears, but I have to say that I agree with what Gould said. When players spend their money on blacked-out semi trucks (Ochocinco), it’s hard to feel bad for them when they face financial crisis.

  42. This is where the players are flat wrong. 95% of the players are replaceable. People dont go to NFL games to see Urlacher who PLAYS for the Bears. They go to see the Chicago Bears. If he didn’t someone else would play that position. Players are replaceable. If Tom Brady was no longer the QB of the Pats, would fans give up their season tickets? I think not. Sure, many would be disappointed in the short-term, but long term, they are still going to games.

  43. He’s half right. It’s the players that are greedy along with a few owners. But he right on with no sympathy for the players that can’t budget ALL their money and waste it and then can’t figure out what happened to them. The players don’t deserve ANY sympathy.

  44. Man, I can’t believe so many of you are jumping on the owner’s bandwagon. You are acting like all of the owners are building stadiums, yet you don’t mention the local taxpayers and the PSL owners that contribute to these massive stadiums now. Gould is right. The owners are greedy and the players who didn’t prepare shouldn’t have sympathy coming their way. Fans show up to games to watch players win for their team. It should be a mutual relationship.

    Gould forgot to mention how selfish and stupid the players are acting now. Both players and owners are interchangable, but without the fans, neither group would have money to pay for their “millions” and “billions”.

    There isn’t any real competition to the NFL…. if there was, there wouldn’t be a lockout… just saying….

  45. @ RealityPolice

    Quoting Gordon Gekko from the movie Wall Street I see. You do realize that Oliver Stone and the writers of that movie wrote him as the villain don’t you? A slick and charismatic villain, but a villain nonetheless. In the end he gets busted for all his “greed”y stock market tricks. He’s no hero and certainly not someone to quote or idolize.

    So, how is “greed” going to save the NFL? To me “greed” has played a role in getting them into this mess. If you can explain how “greed” will save the NFL, I’d like to hear it.

  46. As with any business, those who take the financial risk (owners, investors, etc.) stand to reap the greatest financial benefit so it is not unreasonable for the owners to expect to reap the benefits of ownership. The players already make a lot of money compared to the average person. Just because there is a lot of money there, why do the players deserve more?

    As for the statement that “fans don’t buy tickets to see Virginia or Brian McCaskey,” well, I hate to break it to you Robbie, but fans don’t buy tickets to see you either. There may be some star talent that influence people to buy tickets – Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers – but the truth is, the majority of fans buy tickets to watch their team. And many of us have been watching our teams for several decades. During this time, players come and go, but our interest is in the team.

  47. He may be right about the owners being greedy but, if he was really smart, he wouldn’t of thrown names out there. Good luck when your contract is up, don’t expect to be living in Chicago, dummy.

  48. ok let’s say the owners are greedy. Don’t in fact the players get 60% of that greed. Must be nice pointing fingers and calling the owners greedy when he directly benefits from that so called greed!

  49. When are the players going to realize that without the front office staff and countless others they would have no one there to watch them play a game? Why is it that an employee who is risking $0.00 thinks he is so entitled to such a large pot? I suggest that the owners give the players 50% of all revenue but the players have to put up 50% of the money to run the team operations day to day.

  50. Sorry Robbie your not understanding how this fan thinks, I’m a lifelong Bears fan and have plenty of beef on how the Mckaskies have mismanaged the team However it is their team that I come to see not individual stars as you say, I love Brian Urlacher as a Bear but if he goes to the Packers the love is gone except what he did as a Bear. The “greedy owners” are the ones who have built this league whether themselves or their predecessors along with current and former players. I think most fans realize that it’s the current players not the owners or previous players who are greedy and who could care less about us fans as long as you get bigger paychecks. The owners have offered pretty reasonable terms yet the players led by De Certify Smith refuse to budge at all and why are the owners the only ones looking out for the former players of which you will be one someday? Is it because of current player greed and them not wanting to share anything beyond themselves? I think most fans realize who is truly being greedy here.

  51. While half takes the owner’s side, and the other the player’s side, I’ll just be realistic and take the fans’ side. The fans pay the bills… seems both sides have forgotten that….

  52. “If Tom Brady was no longer the QB of the Pats, would fans give up their season tickets?”

    Probably. Nothing but a big old bandwagon. Ask any random Pat’s ‘fan’ who the quarterback was before Drew Bledsoe. If they miraculously know the answer, ask them who the all time leading rusher is. Try it, it’s fun.

  53. clintonportisheadd says:
    Apr 22, 2011 12:50 PM

    What can one say? He hit the nail on the proverbial head. He was nice enough not to mention that these folks also INHERITED their golden goose.
    What an absolutely ignorant and downright stupid comment. Do a search and you’ll find at least half, if not all of the owners created their wealth, not inherited it.

    Bob Kraft founded a paper company, Forest Products.
    Jerry Jones- Oil.
    The Glazer family- Real Estate.
    Steven Bisciotti- Created the Allegis Group
    Arthur Blank- Home Depot
    Paul Allen- Microsoft
    Jeff Lurie- Producer
    Alex Spanos- Real Estate
    Zygi Wilf- Real Estate

    I’ll let you look up the rest. Yes, some like Mike Brown and Al Davis inherited their teams or wealth, but the majority are self made. Just like every other rich person in this country. You’re ignorant and naive if you believe otherwise.

  54. upsetter1 says:
    Apr 22, 2011 3:58 PM
    @ RealityPolice

    So, how is “greed” going to save the NFL? To me “greed” has played a role in getting them into this mess. If you can explain how “greed” will save the NFL, I’d like to hear it.

    I have no idea if greed will save the NFL. The only reason I changed the quote was because I was afraid if I typed “greed will save Teldar Paper”, it would confuse people.

    But thanks for the blowhardy over analysis.

  55. @Realitypolice

    If you don’t think greed will save the NFL, then why did you say it?

    I hate when people quote something and act like it’s their own words, and thats what you were doing. That makes you phony.

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