NFLPA announces nine candidates for executive director

With the window closed for submitting nominations for the position of NFLPA executive director, the official ballot has been announced.

NFLPA president Eric Winston said via Twitter that incumbent DeMaurice Smith will face Jim Acho, Jason Belser, Sean Gilbert, Robert Griffith, Rob London, Arthur McAfee, John Stufflebeam, and Andrew Smith.

Robert London is one of the newest additions to the pool.  He is described in multiple online articles as a sports agent, but he does not appear to be an NFLPA-certified contract advisor.  In 2013, there were reports linking him to Jay Z’s then-fledging Roc Nation firm.

Jason Belser, who initially was omitted from the final ballot (Winston, in a follow-up tweet, called it an “[u]nfortunate email oversight by me on a crazy last day”), is the NFLPA’s Senior Director of Player Affairs & Development.  He reportedly declared his intent to run to staff members on Thursday.

One other declared candidate apparently failed to secure at least three nominations.  Former player and NFL Executive Committee member Sean Morey, who made an aggressive public case for change in leadership, is not among the official candidates.

The nine candidates will attend the upcoming NFLPA annual meeting and present their cases for election.  The 32 voting player reps (one per team) will then cast a ballot. If one candidate gets 17 or more, he wins the job.  If no one gets a majority, candidate with the least votes drops out and voting continues with the rest, until someone has a majority.

11 responses to “NFLPA announces nine candidates for executive director

  1. Smith may not be great but electing Sean Gilbert would be a disaster. He sat out a season rather than play for the franchise tag and also advised Revis during his lengthy holdout which could have gone on even longer than it did.

    NFL fans be very worried if Gilbert wins.

  2. I agree with Sean Gilbert in almost every way except the 18 game season. I don’t want it, never wanted it, no matter how much Roger Goodell tries to tell me that I want it. The players got jobbed on the last negotiations and I thought they were doing a good job getting a lawyer to be the Big Chief, comes to find out that they hired the wrong lawyer.

    The players knew of the potential lockout years in advance and didn’t prepare. The ant and the grasshopper. I would’ve went to each of them and said, “Make an allotment for 20% of your check, only buy 1 car because Winter is Coming. It’s going in an interest bearing account for 2 years because on X day the owners are going to lock us out and we need to be prepared for the rainy day. Players were broke, and unprepared and some even took out loans – I have no idea why folks taking in a MINIMUM of $400k need loans. I also don’t know how the players got blamed for a lockout – not a strike.

  3. Nine candidates? When there are a lot of candidates, the challengers split the vote, and the incumbent wins.

    This smells like a sly gambit by De Smith to avoid a head-to-head race against a single challenger, Sean Gilbert. My guess is that De directed his player-rep supporters to nominate lots of candidates.

  4. Sounds strange Morey didn’t make it. His platform and questions were completely on point.

    Perhaps De got up to his old tricks to keep him off the ballot.

  5. bmore20 says: Mar 6, 2015 12:35 AM

    How about candidates for a new Commish?

    It won’t make any difference. The owners own the commish and determine what paths he will take on all issues.

    He is only a mouthpiece. His job is to find ways to make more money and do his best to keep the NFL out of court. If he screws the union on the way that’s fine because the union has had no leadership since Gene passed.

  6. Too bad Morey didn’t have the votes… He’s the type of head trauma advocate that may actually bring about some real reform…

    But the players will vote for Revis Uncle cause when your a 20-30 year old NFL player, its only about the benjamins…. not about the quality of life once you retire

  7. DeMaurice Smith does not get enough negative attention for the bad job he’s done as NFLPA director. Like he couldn’t put an opt-out. NBA had a CBA issue the same year. He couldn’t get advice from NBA Union leader Billy Hunter about an opt-out?

    Because of the lack of negative attention this is not being viewed as a bigger story even though it should be covered more than Michele Roberts making her presence known as current NBA Union chief.

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