The nine candidates for the position of NFLPA executive director have begun delivering 15-minute closing arguments to the 32 men who’ll eventually re-elect DeMaurice Smith or elect his replacement. Sean Gilbert, the first man to make his intent to fight Smith known, has provided a hard copy of his comments to the media.
Gilbert, whose platform lists expansion of the regular season merely as a “potential ‘carrot,'” pushed more directly for an 18-game season, claiming that it’s worth $3 billion to $4 billion per year in extra revenue — or another $46 million to $62 million per year in cap space per team.
Those numbers at first blush seem overly optimistic. But even if they’re accurate or conservative, the players previously have made clear their lack of interest in playing two more regular-season games.
Gilbert also claims that the owners will take “another $10 billion” from the players if they don’t agree to expand the season, but the remarks contain no elaboration on the basis for his belief.
As a practical matter, this position hinges Gilbert’s candidacy on not just the willingness but the affirmative desire of the representatives to add two regular-season games. In the past, few if any players have expressed interest in such an approach.