NFL will advise teams how to proceed on Thursday

The NFL has been very quiet in response to Judge Susan Nelson’s ruling denying a stay of the order lifting the lockout pending appeal.  And for good reason.  Given the content of the 20-page opinion, it seems clear that the lockout should end immediately — and in turn that the 2011 league year should begin, with free agency, trades, and all other transactions.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello has forwarded to PFT a statement indicating that the league is taking the order seriously.  Very seriously.

“We are filing tonight a request with the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals for a stay of the preliminary injunction pending our appeal,” Aiello said.  “We believe there are strong legal and practical reasons that support a stay and that the Court of Appeals should have an opportunity to address the important legal issues that will be presented.  We have asked the Court of Appeals to consider on an expedited basis both our request for a stay and the appeal itself.  We are evaluating the District Court’s decision and will advise our clubs in the morning on how to proceed.”

The safest course would be to start the 2011 league year right now, pursuant to rules that the league should have selected weeks ago, if not longer.  Anything short of that will create a very real risk of a finding that the league is, and has been, in contempt of court.

That said, we’re not sure that veteran free agents should want the market to open until the teams have a chance to digest the rules, assess their needs, and set their budgets.  Still, the process should be starting now, with visits being lined up and offers being constructed and negotiations commencing.

As to the draft itself, trades should be expanded to include players under contract.  And other trades should be permitted as well.

Soon, we’ll know more about the course the league has chosen.  It’s safe to say that a lot of money, and possibly more than a few careers, could be riding on this one.

79 responses to “NFL will advise teams how to proceed on Thursday

  1. The NFL as we all have known and love will never be the same. This is a very sad day for all NFL fans.
    Sure it’s exciting that Free agency is going to start and so on but in the long run it will ruin the game with the players wining in the court system.

    Next year there might not even be a draft and for all of you that have been rooting for the players during this whole process might finally realize by them wining the NFL is bound to be ruined.


  2. The NFL won’t be “ruined”. The NFL will be following the free market system that built this country. Anyone who can’t understand that should go back to Russia, China or whatever communist country they came from.

  3. I wonder if the NFL owners realized the can of worms they were opening when they voided the last CBA? Did they just think the legal system was automaticly going to rule in their favor the entire time?
    I love the sport but there is some side of me that is just saying screw it. Blow the current structure up.
    No Draft.
    No Salary Cap/Floor
    No minimum salary.
    No rules other than the ones that are on the field.
    The other half just wants the status quo.

  4. to quote an old NCO of mine. ‘This is the owners goat F*@& we are just holding the tail.’

  5. BTW The only one that I’ve noticed ruining the game in the last couple of years is Roger Goodell. HE ruined the draft by moving the first round to Thursday night. HE pushes for international games that no one wants. HE started cracking down on hard hits. His interest lies not in the fans but in money by diluting the game into this fabricated experience. So I don’t blame the players for wanting to keep their share.

  6. “This is a very sad day for all NFL fans.”

    How’s that sky looking, Chicken Little?

  7. “The NFL as we all have known and love will never be the same. ”

    How’s that sky looking there Chicken Little?

  8. @305phinphan

    The players never had any intention of ending the draft, but going after it gives the players leverage when they finally negotiate (for real since both parties know who has the legal leverage). In the end, they will negotiate a deal where the owners get a little more of the pie than the last CBA. The owners will be disapointed because they wanted alot more and thought they could break the union. The courts didn’t allow the owners to do that.
    But in the end, there will be both a draft and cap.

  9. Looks like the League is just trying to stall until the draft is over. They don’t want to have current players being dealt for picks and then teams that were unable to make moves in this small window, but want to make moves, getting screwed down the road when the stay is approved by the court of appeals and they are unable to do anything.

  10. Just remember…I was on the players side long before it was the cool thing to do.

    Now you see how corupt the owners are and how they had no intention of negotiating in good faith.

    It was obvious from the start that this whole thing was the owner’s fault. Now they’re paying the price for opting out of the deal, claiming they were losing money, and for not negotiating in good faith.

  11. So if they NFL doesn’t start free agency, the NFL will be guilty of collusion… and Peyton Manning can be rewarded 3 times damages (500+ million dollars).

  12. Premier League in England has no draft, and it is doing well fanwise. Economically, Premier League is doomed, but most markets go up and down.

    Free markets. It is what this is all about. Owners could not agree on revenue sharing, so they avoided the conversation and looked to pull more in so that the sharing was not as painful. Now, each team will be run as its own entity. Truly encouraged to locate at the most beneficial city and to hire the most beneficial staff and team.

    Free markets. Hell, even Wall Street cannot claim that anymore. The NFL we know may have died, but that does not mean what is anew would be less exciting.


  13. 305phinphan says:
    Apr 28, 2011 12:24 AM
    The NFL as we all have known and love will never be the same. This is a very sad day for all NFL fans.
    Sure it’s exciting that Free agency is going to start and so on but in the long run it will ruin the game with the players wining in the court system.

    Next year there might not even be a draft and for all of you that have been rooting for the players during this whole process might finally realize by them wining the NFL is bound to be ruined.

    Maybe the owners should have gave serious consideration to this scenario before voiding the previous cba, demanding $1 billion from the owners and stratigically planning to lockout the players by strong arming the networks to give them a $4 billion loan in case they lockout the players. (Another court case they loss and could be facing serious financial penalties).

    The crazy thing is no NFL team was losing money…oh sure teams may not have been making as much money as they wanted but as far as been reported there has been no NFL team that reported losing money. You know if any NFL team was losing money the league would have used that in court to show teams would suffer irreparable harm if the lockout was lifted yet that wasn’t argued.

    I can’t tell which is greater…the arrogance of NFL owners or the stupidity of many posters on PFT who seem to think everything the owners do is right.

  14. The owners should open for business as usual. Let the players in, pay them their salaries, etc. What they should also do is not sign one single free agent or draft pick this year. That is still their right isn’t it?

  15. Dang it I was hoping to see at least 4 QBs get picked in the 1st round so more talent gets flushed down the board for my team who picks at 32 this year. 🙂

    Now that teams can talk to FAs and/or trade players theres a chance only 2 QBs will go in the first, that would suck.

  16. Don’t count the owners out too soon. This is a mere speed bump in the whole course. Soon the players are going to regret decertifying and forcing chaos on the league. The owners are going to become ultimate tighwads because of this insane chaos and instability. No smart business man will be spending in an environment like this.

    Any loss for the owners is a loss for the players. Just follow the direction the money flows. The ultimate example of biting the hand that feeds you.

  17. Meanwhile the ‘fraud’ commissioner said weeks ago that the league was prepared for any outcome. Not exactly Roger. You’re too busy figuring out ways to greed out the fans to have your ducks in a row and get the league year started. Why is there no NFL network available online? Why aren’t games available online to fans who want to pay for them? The answer is simple – GREED. Stop saying you care about the fans. You and the NFL only care about your bottom line.

  18. I Love this judge
    This is from her decision to lift the lockout:

    But because the Union’s disclaimer is valid and effective, the labor law policies of
    collective bargaining must give way to the antitrust policies in favor of competition. On
    an economic level, the public has an interest in the enforcement of the Sherman Act,
    which, by seeking to ensure healthy competition in the market, has a broad impact beyond
    the immediate parties to this dispute. Moreover, the public ramifications of this dispute
    exceed the abstract principles of the antitrust laws, as professional football involves many
    layers of tangible economic impact, ranging from broadcast revenues down to concessions sales. And, of course, the public interest represented by the fans of professional football–who have a strong investment in the 2011 season–is an intangible interest that weighs against the lockout. In short, this particular employment dispute is far from a purely private argument over compensation.

  19. what happens if the NFL is found in contempt of court?? tell me it involves dan snyder in jail, he shouldve been locked up a long time ago…

  20. I go to games, all of them, mainly because its one of the last places you can go get drunk in public. RaiderNation. Destroyed the West last year, and thats only a taste of whats to come,..the Oakland Raiders will roll teams in 2011,…the bad times are over, dues have been paid, the Raider Nation is back, whether you like it or not.

  21. @305phinphan why are you so in the tank for the owners? I’m just curious, not saying you’re wrong or anything .

    I find fault on both sides, not one more than the other. Why the owners didn’t vote on allowing business to continue even w/o a CBA in place years ago when the issue first came up is beyond me.

    The players drawing a line in the sand, demanding to see the owners books, is ridiculous to me. I hire you and you want to see my bank account statements? WTF?

    Billionaires vs. Millionaires = EPIC FAIL

  22. I don’t think the owners should back down at all.

    There is something obviously and blatantly obscene about the likes of Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Drew Brees going to a court for worker’s rights protection. I mean, isn’t there?

    Not to mention the likes of Albert Haynesworth, Brandon Marshall, Ben Roethlisberger, etc. who use their immense wealth and power to cause harm and demean other human beings.

    How can you have an iota of respect for them? I can’t anymore.

  23. The NFL Owners put themselves in this messy situation by being super greedy. Up until the owner imposed lockout, The NFL was in the greatest shape it has ever been in. Popularity wise and financially.

    The league was going to expand and make even more money thanks to the digital movement, tv contracts etc…. The owners wanted a bigger piece of what was shaping up to be a absurdly gigantic pie.

    Greed has put them in this position. Like the players or not. They were willing to go with the status quo. They were even willing to make some concessions like a rookie wage scale etc…

    Unfortunately, The NFL owners greed has put their league in a potentially damaging situation long term. The strength of the league is due to the system of parity. Now parity could go by the wayside. There are certain owners that actually would be happy in a non parity NFL. Certain table pounding plastic surgery egomaniacs would love to turn their NFL franchises into the football equivalent of The Yankees.

    The owners deserve to lose this battle but in the end because of their greed. It’s the NFL fan that could end up losing the most.

  24. I have a strong suspicion that one of the casualties of this whole train wreck will be the tenure of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Whatever you think of the merits of the arguments of both sides, the NFL has not handled this very well. What would have been so hard about “showing the books?” It certainly would have been cheaper and less disruptive to the business than going down this insane route. Goodell does not match up favorably with his two predecessors and very well may lose the confidence of both owners and players.

  25. It is finally time for Mr. Rooney, Mr. Mara, Mr. Kraft, Mr. Bowlen and a couple more of the “old guard” to kick the Jerrahs and that punk Snyder out of the room and get crackin’ on a new agreement now!!

    All of the money they’re trying to save by not paying the players is just going into the pockets of the attorneys. The time has finally come for the owners to sit their a$$e$ down and negotiate.

    A new CBA (if it’s done right) will have terms that rule free agency, the draft, rookie salary cap, trades, etc. etc. If some things change in the new CBA, so be it, as long as it exists the NFL will remain very close to what it was.

    The chicken little routine, 305phinphan, is starting to get a bit stale.

  26. When you hear people that want ‘deregulation’ and ‘free market’, this is what it is. A TON of you should be happy. I’m just saying for people ‘politicizing’ the issue.

    The REASON why the NFL is awesome is because even the Bungles can win their division (couple years back), in SPITE of having a top 3 worst owner in pro sports. When you have a spending floor, you gotta put it somewhere…

    The players winning at every step is a very very bad thing for the league. 6 teams will be no better than the Pirates or Royals (without thinking about it) within a year, should the league not have any ‘rules’. The players are going down a dangerous route right now for short term gains. The health of the sport is not going to be what it is, should there be a complete free market.

  27. WOW this draft is gonna be exiting…lol Trades all over the place. Im an Eagles fan so naturally I’m hoping that trades can happen, obviously PFT thinks it would be a good idea and a smart move too. C’mon NFL at least allow player trades at the draft at the very least… Hmm do I want the Eagles drafting Peterson or do I want them landing the Oakland CB in FA? Or both? Good god what a secondary that would make with Assante…lol

  28. Don’t despair: the 8th Circuit is coming to the rescue!
    Or, the Supreme Court….
    Or, Congress….

  29. All it takes is 1 team to get out of line, and make a deal, and then it’s on! A free for all!!!!

  30. i wonder how this will affect the value of picks for next year. if this year will be played under the same rules as last year, it means no rookie scale

    and since it is very likely we will have a draft next year (although the league can find a way to lose that too) and next year we will have a rookie wage scale – picks next year should be worth much more

    i hate all this stupid fight, but i certainly enjoy picturing all the league exec and the owners swating this mess today

  31. People need to realize the NFL put into motion 3 years ago a lock out this year. They had it planned, which is why they did the TV contracts in a way that gave them money if a lockout did happen. Two years ago they voided the contract which ran through this 2012. What is pissing them off, is the players did the unthinkable and dissolved the union making it illegal for the NFL to lock out ‘everyone’.

    How messed up is it that a group of conservatives are asking the 8th district court to force the players back into a union. How messed up is it that a group of conservatives are saying “without the players union the NFL is doomed”.

  32. Anyone with half a brain should be rooting for the owners to win this appeal. They maybe greedy but t are attempting to preserve what makes the NFL great a salary cap, revenue sharing, and the draft. Lifting the lockout is a short term fix, I personally would rather miss a few games of 1 season then have the competitive balance ruined, by De Smith and his fairy hats.

  33. kspl1 says:
    Apr 28, 2011 12:22 AM
    God I hope we can trade kolb and move up in the draft to get Peterson


    Nope. We’ll already own him b4 Arizona is on the clock. Write that down.

  34. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA GREAT DAY FOR THE USA FOR FANS AS THE MONEY GRUBBING OWNERS AND THE EVIL COMISH GOT PUT IN THEIR PLACE BY JUDGES ACTUALLY DOIG THEIR JOBS FOR ONCE!! Phinphan is such a dumb pos this has nothing to do with next year as a new cba will be in place by then! All this means is that we get football and the billionares lose to the little guy!! I LOVE THE USA!!

  35. Don’t worry 305phinfan, the NFL isn’t going anywhere, and there won’t be any dramatic changes. Goodell’s nightmare scenario is just a bit of spin. Neither side is looking to blow up the system. It’s just two sides jockeying for leverage in negotiating the next labor deal. Think of it as a game of chicken, where the loser has to agree to more concessions in the next labor deal. If the owners can get the lockout reinstated and prolong any anti-trust case, enough players will run out of money and come back to the negotiations at a disadvantage. If the players can keep the lockout enjoined, then they continue to play and get paid during the process and can hold out indefinitely. In that case, the owners blink as the real anti-trust case gets close to a court date. either way, the draft, salary cap, free agency, etc are going nowhere. Both sides simply make too much money off the current system for either side to completely blow it up.

  36. @305phinphan …….. says who? the oners.I dont thjnk the owners have told the truth since this whole lockout has started.Both sides still have to work a deal out..But the owners are to worried about getting the fans behind them!!

  37. @305phinphan

    The NFL isn’t dead, the original CBA (which they have been operating under for 25 or so years) was negotiated between the NFL and the union’s class counsel. The next CBA will be negotiated between the league and the union’s class counsel; see no change. What has been demonstrated to the owners is that their anti-trust exemptions should not be taken for granted. I would go further and say that their whole business model was based on having a strong union that could negotiate for the players and they took that for granted too. Don’t let this worry you though, there will be a new CBA and it will have a draft, a rookie pay scale, free agency, a salary cap, better funding for retired players and drug testing. In short it will look an awful lot like the CBA the owners tore up two years ago just tweaked slightly instead of entirely re-modelled.

    I suspect that the whole process so far has been an attempt by the owners to destroy revenue sharing by reducing payroll costs to those that can easily be supported by the meagre-est of franchises (in order that Messrs Jones, Snyder and Kraft can keep the rest). The fallout from all this is going to be between the big market teams and the small market teams. Anyone remember the last CBA negotiation? You know the one where the coverage was dominated by revenue sharing discussions. Well that topic will return with a vengeance soon enough.

  38. At the moment the players have the owners over a barrel. The owners’ last resort maybe to call the players bluff and procede without any rules. Then hope that the squeeze this puts on the bottom 95% of the rosters encourages them to unionise.

    Either way one wonders what happens in the draft. The last CBA enables the draft to take place, but what happens after that, can the teams really sign their draftees without risking anti-trust violations.

  39. Terrible for the fans. Best thing possible would have been a quick cba like the last terms offered by he owners. Now everything will change. It’s all demaurice the snakes fault, he has no love for the game an is simply screwing everyone.

  40. *sigh*

    WTF is wrong with our legal system?

    If the players struck, the NFL wouldn’t be able to do a damn thing. But the people who own the business have literally NO power to try to run their own business?

    “Guys we need to cut back on player spending.”

    “HAHHAHAHAHA nope.”

    “Okay, then we are going to need to make you guys work for more games.”

    “HAHAHAHAHAHA nope.”

    “Okay, well, here’s an offer. I know it’s not perfect right now, but how about we use it as a start in getting a deal done. Look we are giving you guys so many concessions…can’t you give us some?”

    “No you guys are all Nazi slave owners. We’re going to court because we have a false sense of entitlement to money.”

    “Players, state your case.”

    “Meanie Goodell is a big jerk head!! He wants to make us work for less. He also hasn’t done anything for the league. I know that he’s been battling concussions, but I take riddilin to mask my baseline tests. Whenever someone leads with their heads and get fined, we all complain. He’s a liar and a fraud and a slave owner AND he was part of the Gestapo.”

    “Hmmm…these men shouldn’t have any sort of leverage. Lift the lockout!!”

  41. The only thing they should do is allow trades. Anything else, including trading future draft picks, is at risk of being under the anti-trust umbrella.

    There should be no signings until this plays out.

  42. NFL to Teams: Keep playing stupid, it’ll work until the Eighth Circuit Court hears our story!

    And these are the same guys who say they want a full season.


  43. It seems that many people really don’t understand how this might play. This is a BAD sign for all North American sports. Sure the league year will start, free agenceny and trades will happen and the season will happen but what then? What if they go after the draft? What if the draft becomes illegal? The NBA is watching. They’re union has already decided to follow suit. Then MLB will go when they’re up followed by the NHL and everybody else. No drafts for any league. Not only is the NFL going to change but every professional sport in the US will be changed dramatically. I’m all for football, but we need some rules here.

  44. Why would the league want to begin the new year. No matter what rules they implement some highly educated players will sue. Don’t like restricted free agency, I’ll sue. Don’t like my contract, I’ll sue. Don’t want to be suspended for being involved in criminal activity and the commish suspends me, I’ll sue.

    Having grown up in Minnesota, the courts there are a joke. Reference the Star Caps case, it take 2+ years to suspend players who clearly broke the rules.

    And another thing. I would love to know where this “money” Drew Brees is “giving back” to the owners is. I am pretty sure that jackass is under a thing called a contract which more or less defines exactly what he will make in the years of the contract. I am also pretty sure when that contract is up, he will sign another one, probably for more money. Gee I think everyone of the plaintiffs is under these “contracts”, except Von Miller. If he does not like where is picked or a possible rookie wage scale, why not sue the league.

    Tear, tear, tear, cry, cry. My playing career is only 3 years. You tell me the person who would not take a job for three years where they made a minimum $300,000. So objectively as a low number lets say they clear $100,000. What a tough life that must be. Oh and my former employer only pays for my health care for a few years after I work. That is tragic. You players have it so bad. Oh yeah, I have never had an employer pay for my health care at all, let alone AFTER I worked there.

    I better sue somebody. The American way

    Owners Opt out of CBA 2008
    Negotiation 2011
    Players De-Certify rather than negotiate more

    How did the owners force a lockout again? Why are we not negotiating?

  45. I’m not pro anyone in this dispute. I think both sides are to blame and have faults. However, if someone was to force me into a do or die situation, I would probably lean towards the players because it was the owners who opted out of the old CBA which included draft, free agency, etc. So the players wanted to sign that CBA and operate under those conditions, but the owners refused to sign it, hence the lockout.

    So, I personally don’t believe the picture that Goodell painted in the WSJ is what the players actually want. It is a ploy to gain leverage. Again, I could be completely wrong and the players might indeed want that (which would, no doubt, be horrible). But essentially, what I want is to have football, and have things go back to the way it was before with draft, free agency, etc but the NFL doesn’t seem to want that with the refusal to start the league year and their appeal to the 8th Circuit to have the lockout in place.

  46. Now we can trade all our draft picks and get Brady Quinn back! A saving moment from the courts!

  47. The NFL should fire it’s lawyer or lier. It’s only going to get worse for them going forward. this is why Goodell and other league people keep saying they want to negotiate a settlement. Oops too late. The game will be just fine. Fewer teams and better players on the teams left. Deep six the looser owners that are causing this mess….Jacksonville…Buffalo….Minnesota and others who should have never been approved for a franchise. Craft and Jones are giddy over this…..BET ON THAT!!!

  48. The NFL won’t be “ruined”. The NFL will be following the free market system that built this country. Anyone who can’t understand that should go back to Russia, China or whatever communist country they came from.

    You must be a Yankees or Red Sox fan

  49. klock77 says: Apr 28, 2011 4:29 AM

    Anyone with half a brain should be rooting for the owners to win this appeal. They maybe greedy but t are attempting to preserve what makes the NFL great a salary cap, revenue sharing, and the draft. Lifting the lockout is a short term fix, I personally would rather miss a few games of 1 season then have the competitive balance ruined, by De Smith and his fairy hats.
    Well, I have a whole brain, so I don’t feel the need to root for the owners in the legal battle. This whole nightmare scenario that the NFL as we know it will be dismantled is ridiculous. Not going to happen. Both sides are simply jockeying for leverage when it comes to negotiating the next labor deal. Neither side will completely blow up the system because it will cost both sides way too much money.

  50. GG Eden says: Apr 28, 2011 7:01 AM

    Mike, or anyone else, what would happen hypothetically if the NFL was found in contempt of court?
    If found to be in contempt, the best case scenario for the league would be each team and/or the league as a whole would be fined. Worst case is that the owners and commissioner could be jailed. If that were to happen, it would be for a set period of time, with those involved being able to get out immediately as soon as they complied with the original court order. It will never get that far, however. The Judge would give a very explicit warning first, and that at least would make the owners finally admit they understand what her order meant and comply.

  51. The players are what we consider cost of goods sold. They are the first line of expenses and are directly tied to the production of your product. All other expenses (generally speaking) like back office, marketing, etc. are Operating Costs, and are not tied directly to revenue. Why is this important? Because as revenue grows, the cost of goods sold (players salaries) grow at the same rate, but leave a larger dollar portion for operating costs(however the valuations are growing at a faster rate than salaries). SOOO…assuming that operating costs are being managed, then as revenues increase, a business becomes more profitable. What the owners are saying, that they are becoming less profitable in an environment of rising revenue….well….its either not true or its due to mismanagement. Thats just a financial truth. Ask any financial person….
    Simple Example:
    – Revenue of $10 with 70% cost of goods sold (players salaries)
    – Operating costs of $2
    – Gives net income of $1, or 10% of revenue

    Now….revenues go up to $20 and cost of goods sold (players salaries) remains level at 70%
    – Operating costs may go up slightly, lets just say to $3 (operating costs will grow as a business grows, but in this model, not that much…)
    – Net income is now $3, or 15% of revenue.

    So….the owners are simply lying here. And THATS why they are unwilling to share their financials. Of course, if I’m them, I wouldn’t want to share my financials either. But I’d also understand that its not going to fly to cry poor when everyone can see that my business is booming.

  52. stanklepoot says:Apr 28, 2011 7:34 AM

    Well, I have a whole brain, so I don’t feel the need to root for the owners in the legal battle. This whole nightmare scenario that the NFL as we know it will be dismantled is ridiculous. Not going to happen. Both sides are simply jockeying for leverage when it comes to negotiating the next labor deal. Neither side will completely blow up the system because it will cost both sides way too much money.

    I’d like to point out that short of recertifying, the players have no say in the court case at this point. The class action lawyers have the only say and it really isn’t their concern as to how much it would cost.

  53. is based on tangible cash revenue streams.

    The NFL since around 1994 has had 3 or 4 billion dollar revenue streams they didnt have prior.

    Fantasy Football

    Internet sales.

    NFL Network

    Not to mention the outlandish cable contracts, Madden Football, etc etc.

    I think the valuations based on the massive amounts of cash (large unreported) revenues is pretty accurate. Even if they are off, and the Pats value isnt what is reported by Forbes, is it really that far off? Based on those revenue streams flowing in? Not to mention the revenues the owners dont report. Imentioned the value has risen nearly 900% while the salary cap hasnt risen at half that rate. I am not making that up.

    The bottom line here is the players are not asking for more money. They want it to be it the way it is. There is more than enough money being made. The owners are doing all of this to get a billion dollar cut. They are asking the players to reduce their cut by 20%.

  54. “The owners should open for business as usual. Let the players in, pay them their salaries, etc. What they should also do is not sign one single free agent or draft pick this year. That is still their right isn’t it?”

    Sure … as individual businesses, they can decide not to sign new employees. If all 32 teams (or some subset) agree among themselves that they all won’t do that, though, it’s an anti-trust violation, and that’s not their right.

    So, one team can decide for itself that it won’t sign anyone. If all 32 teams decide that, it’s going to look an awful lot like collusion. Particularly after the arm-twisting that went on Tuesday when the Giants opened their facility to the players, and then were forced to change that position.

  55. Rhode Island Patriots Fan says: Apr 28, 2011 12:44 AM

    I anticipate that the league will not open for business—the draft being the notable exception, of course—unless the 8th Circuit denies their request for a stay on Judge Nelson’s order.


    They don’t have that option. By YOUR logic they can say “we will ignore every court order until we exhaust all our appeals even to the Supreme Court”

    It don’t work that way. In this country you must obey the order unless/until it is reversed. To do otherwise is giving a giant middle finger to our system of justice and asking for a stint in jail for contempt.

  56. i hope this is finally it for this p.o.s. roger goodell has been the worse commissioner in the history of sports. i hate this man he has done absolutley nothing for the sport of football. i want to sport of football to remain and hard hitting game that ive always known and loved i do not want to see a glorified track meet. get rid of goodell and get rid of his i dont want anyone hitting anyone so we can have a 18 game schedule which absolutly know one wants. sure hope goodell is booed loudly everytime he gets on stage tonight.

  57. I hope the Eagles can get a deal done with Kolb so they can move up, and then be utterly disappointed when Prince and Peterson are both gone. Wouldn’t that just be a victory for the other 31 teams in the league.

  58. @fltharley

    First of all, let’s think about Paul Tagliabue for a second. Go on YouTube and search for the Real Sports from 2007 about concussions. There is an NFL doctor on there denying the dangers of concussions. The NFL didn’t believe it was an issue. In comes Roger Goodell. He has made the game safer by imposing fines (which, if you read the CBA, all go to either player funds OR charities). He has been a leader in concussion innovation and prevention and is literally trying to make the game safer. As a former high school football player who suffered 3 concussions, they suck. Plain and simple. There was a stigma back when I played too that you were a p***y if you sat out for them. I was smart and sat out, but I caught much grief for it.

    Also, on a side note, please proofread your sentences before you post them. It makes it a lot easier for people to at least respect what you’re saying if you spell things correctly and use better grammar. It’s “worst” not “worse”, it’s also not “know one” its “no one”. Education is half the battle when debating. If you are able to articulate yourself professionally, it will lead to more people taking you seriously. Right now, people view you as a child.

  59. Is it me or does it seem that the NFL is delaying on the immediate compliance on lifting the lockout, bc of the immediate free agency trading activity it’s going to cause. (Which impacts the draft)

    They indicate that they’re going to file an appeal tonight,which will be after the first round of the draft. I can’t help but think their timing/delay is on purpose.

    I agree with the article, because of the ruling on denial of stay, the lockout must be lifted immediately pending Court of Appeals review.

  60. @broncoway

    The argument isn’t that every single team is operating at a loss, but rather the system is unsustainable. Because of the way revenue sharing is set up, some teams may be operating with $12, some with $8. The problem is the player salaries are a constant. So to be able to turn in a profit, the teams need to reduce costs, but the players aren’t budging. The owners are not lying. Just read the 2006 CBA, you’ll understand then.

  61. Wouldn’t it be wise to postpone the draft till many of these details get worked out during this very uncertain legal period? Btw, how can the league conduct a draft under the auspices of the old CBA, when that agreement has expired, the players union no longer exists, and Judge Nelson has ended the lockout?

  62. Knowing that you will censor this post as well, just please stop giving legal opinions because you embarass yourself.

    Guess what? Litigants are allowed to appeal certain rulings as a matter of course (and injunctions are one of those instances). Also, the rules provide for the right to seek a stay of certain rulings. Trying to do so, and the time necessary to do so, does not mean that while doing so litigants am in contempt of the court’s rulings by keeping the status quo. That is what the NFL is doing and since everything so far has been predicted by many with everyone agreeing that the main decision to come from the Appellate Court will be the important one, your “the sky is falling” if the NFL does not immediately sign free agents is ridiculous and wrong.

    The league is not required to do anything at this minute other than decide how to run its business. Because of the antitrust nature of the attack, and because each team can act on its own according to the lawsuit, then each team is not required to let anyone into its facility to train until it says so. If anything, according to you, each player should have reported to the team facilities to work as any other employee. Each team has a right to take time to determine what new rules it will impose: what each employee will pay for health insurance (or whether to have it at all); when the plyers will be drug tested and for what; the installation of cash registers in the cafeteria for each player to pay for his own food; the obtaining of new workmen’s compensation insurance to take care if a player hurts himself and then gets fired; the drafting of covenants not to compete for each player signed; the drafting of new pension plans; and the scheduling of daily meetings just to name a few.

    So stop your absurd pronouncements about contempt and try to cover the matter like a journalist rather than a player mouthpiece.

  63. As a fan, a big part of me wants the 8th Circuit to reject the owners arguments. That is the fastest way back to the bargaining table.

    Of course, that only works if the players are willing to negotiate this time, and don’t take advantage of their total-leverage to damage the league.

    There ARE some things the players wanted that I liked. Squashing the 18-game season was one, appealing some of the fines and suspensions was another, etc…

    At least the bargaining should move faster than the courts after the legal decisions are through.

  64. The reason this mess exists is because every owner wants a stadium bigger than Jurrah’s (and needs the profits to afford it), and every player thinks he is an all-star capable of making those 5 or 6 teams that will speend big $$$ at every position so they can dominate in the coming “free for all” environment.

    The megalomaniacs meet the delusionals.

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