Chicago ownership meetings get started early

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The league’s owners have gathered in Chicago for meetings aimed at building a consensus as to the current negotiations for a new labor deal.  Originally a one-day meeting scheduled for Tuesday, the owners had been told to pack a bag in the event that the meetings extend into Wednesday.

Apparently, that bag-packing directive applied to the front end of the session as well.  Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the meetings actually began on Monday, with at least one and possibly more team officials summoned to participate.

The information blackout largely has been effective.  With that tight lid on details, here’s what we’re currently hearing.

The thinking is that Commissioner Roger Goodell will be trying to persuade the owners to do a win-win deal at a time when there’s a belief by many owners that the players will take the last, best offer made during the current phase of talks.  The concern, we’re told, is that one (or more) of the owners will argue that, if the players are prepared to take the best offer the owners make now, an even better deal for the league can be finagled by forcing the players to miss a few game checks.

As the source explained it, more than a few owners believe the league has a hammer — and that the league should use it.

Goodell is expected to urge those owners to consider the best interests of the game, since it will end the labor unrest without doing any significant damage to the league.  Whether he can pull it off will go a long way toward ending the lockout and bringing back football.

Here’s hoping that he does.

36 responses to “Chicago ownership meetings get started early

  1. Another “BIG DAY” that will most likely fizzle out to a subtle “tidbit of information”

  2. Why just a win-win deal? You fight all this time defending your position then when the other side is looking ready to give some ground you say “let’s do something that is in the middle or makes both sides equally happy (or unhappy)”

    I agree it makes sense to not go until game checks are lost to get a knock-out win and put the players in a “you lost” position. But if one side has the advantage now, isn’t that what all the manuevering is about? So the side with the advatange should pursue a win-lose deal or at the least a WIN-win deal.

    A good compromise is rarely directly in the middle of what both sides want.

  3. That “hammer” those owners want to use would hit fans just as hard as players, if not more so since the players can always choose to not cave but we will end up sitting around without sh*t to do all September.

  4. “Goodell is expected to urge those owners to consider the best interests of the game, since it will end the labor unrest without doing any significant damage to the league.”

    This is kind of interesting. First being ignored yet again by the clear and obvious bias that has been following this story since March is the failure to mention what the players need to do, you know, like make counter offers (maybe they have). But beating that drum with you is pointless.

    The owners, actual businessmen, you know people who know how to run something successfully have a far better understanding of what needs to be done to secure the longevity of the game financially. If making the players miss a few game checks in order to force them to understand what needs to happen is better for the longevity of the game, then that strategy needs to be applied. A simple rush to get the best deal done that they can get could lead us to a similar position a few years down the road. What would the point of that be? Pay a few loudmouths now that will be gone in a few years just to get the season started? I don’t want to miss any football but I am bright enough to understand that if missing a season or a partial season is the best way to get a fair and sustainable deal done, then that is what needs to happen.

  5. The owners are right. They should use the hammer they have. The 8th circuit will not lift the lockout and a decent PR director/campaign will rightly pin it to the players dragging this into the courts FIRST AND FOREMOST, Walking away from the negotiating table.

  6. “Goodell is expected to urge those owners to consider the best interests of the game, since it will end the labor unrest without doing any significant damage to the league.”

    WTF?! Is this Roger Goodell we’re talking about?

    When did he start giving a f*ck?

  7. As I’ve stated before Roger Goodell needs to be the commissioner of The NFL, and get the owners to accept a deal for the good of the game. Quit being such a candy arse who can only follow orders. Be a true leader like Demaurice Smith and grow the game. Run the meeting Roger, don’t like the owners run you as usual.

  8. Oh please please please let this be the end of it. This will be the one and only time I root for ol goodell to succeed at anything. I just want to watch the texans stumble through another season of mediocrity!!!

  9. Look at the picture, looks like Jerry Richardson has his hand up his back. He needs to get rid of that clueless blank weak chin look. I can’t stand the guy.

  10. Mike Brown, stop being cheap. I feel sorry for Bengals fans that you own their franchise. You are the reason they blow so badly. It’s a sheer miracle that they win any games at all.

  11. The info blackout will work until Jerry shows up drunk at the hotel bar about 10pm tonight. 🙂

  12. This is a bit like a retail store having a problem between management and the workers. One side orders the door to the store locked.
    The faithful customers are left outside in the cold.
    Both sides have forgotten who is actually paying their salaries.
    But with a wide majority of the fans swallowing anything that is told to them, perhaps the “customers” deserve to be locked out.

    July 1st…nothing signed…time for the ‘customers’ to be heard.

  13. Go on strike, then both parties will lose millions. The fans will still have College Football which is better anyway.

  14. This is one situation where football needs to end in a tie! If either side in this labor dispute attempts to score a victory over the other side, then the game will be seriously harmed. Both sides deserve “security” but not at the expense of the other side.

    I am disturbed by the rumor that some owners want to use a hammer against the players. I am equally disturbed that some on the labor side want to get rid of salary limits, the draft, etc… Neither would be welcome by fans, who ultimately are the “customers” for the product being provided.

    A civil society can only exist when its member parts can compromise with one another. If they cannot, the whole of society suffers in the long term.

  15. I wouldn’t exactly call having to defend a multi-billion dollar anti-trust lawsuit holding a hammer.

    Any extra money the owners could possibly gain from the players by having them miss game checks will be more than offset by the damage caused by the same. Even if not, why put the players in a position where they may want to strike in a short time?

    No doubt there’s some stubborn old men among NFL owners who have gotten too used to getting their way all the time, but here’s to hoping that they truly didn’t get to where they are by being stupid.

  16. The threat of not playing some games at the start of the season may be short term advantage for the owners but it will cost them dearly in the long run.

    Fans are tired of hearing the two sides squabble over a messily $9B (sarcasm).

  17. Okay so we all know there is an ownership meeting. We all know that it started early. That is all you can tell thats worth telling. So please no more on this until you know something worth telling.

  18. @ ampats says:

    Lock the doors and no one comes out until they reach an agreement.



  19. I knew that there were some owners willing to miss some games which would force the players to take a lesser deal because they would be missing game checks. That is so short sighted of them, because the money that would be lost by the league (TV contracts) and the teams (loss of ticket sales/concessions/parking/etc/) would be in the tens of millions to the players millions, only to win an even bigger percentage of this pie from the players.

  20. Dear Owners:

    I am absolutely not siding with you, OR the players in this debacle. But one sentence in this story tells a disturbing tale: “…an even better deal for the league can be finagled by forcing the players to miss a few game checks.”
    Fans love the game. Fans love the players. Fans DO NOT love the owners, and this type of slap-in-the-face greed is intolerable. You’re already rich, you’re gonna get richer. Just bring the game to the fans, not to its knees.

  21. this is quite the game of grab ass they’ve got going. split the damn money already!!!! what a bunch of jackholes!

  22. Boxing gloves. Let’s see Jerry Richardson go up against Ray Lewis.

    The undercard can be Clay Matthews vs. Ralph Wilson.

    Maybe toss Jerry Jones vs. Albert Haynesworth ion there, too, just to give the owners an easy one…

    Winner takes all.

  23. Does the league still get to keep their TV contract money if games are not played?

  24. Wow some people here are dumb. As much as we would all like to see Roger be a commissioner and broker a deal, he works for the owners. The owners hire him, pay him and can fire him. If they tell him to represent them, that is his job. You may not like it, but it is what it is. If you are that stupid to think he has the power to do what he feels is best you are living in another decade.

    As for pftstory who thinks the owners should lower the hammer on the players, the idea is to create labor peace for an extended period of time, not be back here in 4 years. The idea is to have a labor deal for 25+ years. If the owners want to cripple the players then the owners will destroy the game of football and the fan support. Hopefully they are not that stupid and I am happy you are not an owner.

  25. Goodell is right. The league probably could wait it out and hammer the players, but is that really what they want? both sides will have given up something in this process and at least now, they both can save face in front of the fans. There will always be players and owners that think they got screwed…………

  26. If the owners believe they hold the “hammer”, they’d better wear it out beating some sense into their own thick skulls. The “we got the hammer attitude” will blow up the 2011 season. Using that approach at this point will “force” the players to wait for the court’s decision, why not? What would they have to lose, leverage? The players have no interest in the kind of leverage they’d get at the working end of a hammer.

  27. Judging by the amount of “thumbs down” to my comment I can assume that people on here would rather have a short term solution that gets them football this season and another labor fight 2-3 years down the road as opposed to a long term solution that gets them football for many, many years to come. Typical of today’s fast food, gotta have it now society.

  28. @ Jaime
    I would rather see a deal done for at least 8 years. I hate going through these things

  29. @dickroy

    As would I. I am more interested in the longevity of the game than pleasing a few drive by fans who just can’t get the larger picture.

  30. “Go on strike, then both parties will lose millions. The fans will still have College Football which is better anyway.”

    Yeah, until Thanksgiving! Then CFB will be over and still no NFL. Not good for the fans.

  31. Anyone who thinks this lockout is ending anytime soon is extremely naive. These daily reports I’m reading about “significant optimism” are BS. Maybe they’ve resolved some very, very, very, very minor issues. And I only give that a “maybe”.

    Here’s all you need to know:
    1. No one has felt any pain yet. Owners have lost no revenue; players have missed no checks.
    2. No one is going to lose any revenue/salary until the season starts. Yes, I guess the owners will lose some $$ if they miss the preseason, but that’s peanuts, comparitively.
    3. When a couple idiot hip hopping wide receivers get a couple cars or some jewelry repossessed, then the pain starts for the players.
    4. When 3-4 regular season games are missed, and the owners have to dip into savings to make mortgage payments on their stadiums, then the pain starts for the owners.

    5. Conclusion: Don’t believe a thing you read and/or hear about a “settlement”; “progress”; or “optimism”. Strikes and lockouts NEVER settle early. Never. Sorry.

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