What kind of a deal can the NFL, NFLPA strike?

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The timing was hardly coincidental that the NFL and NFLPA issued a joint statement pressing pause on the league’s new anthem policy only hours after word emerged regarding 2018 work rules from the Dolphins that vaguely connected violations of the anthem policy to potential suspensions. As more and more camps open, more and more similar reports would have emerged.

So the league smartly mobilized to put out up to 31 other fires before they started, and the union agreed (possibly without getting anything in return) to that approach. The question now becomes whether the two sides can agree on yet another new anthem policy before the regular season begins, six weeks and six days from now in the city were our collective freedoms were secured more than 240 years ago.

It won’t be easy, unless the union decides to demonstrate the kind of magnanimity at the bargaining table that the league never would. The players hold the cards on this one, especially if the NFL hopes to emerge with an NBA-style rule that players will stand for the anthem — and not to stay in the locker room as an alternative to participating in the pre-game display of patriotism.

The league should have swooped in two years ago and struck a deal with the NFLPA to make standing mandatory, right after Colin Kaepernick was first spotted sitting during the anthem. But the league likely didn’t want to make any concessions in order to make that happen. In the months since August 2016, as the controversy has grown and grown, the price for getting the players to agree to stand surely has gone up, and up.

Unless, of course, union leadership is willing to bend on this issue to boost mutual business interests, even if there’s no hard evidence that the anthem issue actually has affected business interests. At a minimum, the union would need to emerge with something in return for an agreement to stand for the anthem. Otherwise, the internal and external blowback could become significant.

Whatever they do, a P.R. minefield awaits. If the second revised anthem policy still allows for any form of protest, a certain politician who could benefit from the distraction right about now (and pretty much during any given news cycle) will pounce. And if Anthem Policy 3.0 entails a joint agreement from the league and players to stand, victory will be declared — and declared again and again until the midterm elections and beyond.

So good luck, NFL and NFLPA, as you try to solve this one. While you’re at it, go ahead and try to extend the CBA, cure cancer, achieve world peace, and figure out whether Tony Soprano was still alive after the screen went dark.

135 responses to “What kind of a deal can the NFL, NFLPA strike?

  1. Maybe the owners just need to grow a set and stand up to the petulant child in the White House

  2. I can’t believe we are at this point in our country that everyone can’t respect the flag and national anthem. It’s supposed to be about being grateful for the things we have, not protesting the things that need to be fixed. And there’s not just one issue that could /should be changed (As there always has been) but the players have chosen this one issue.

    Protesting has always been part of America, but pick a better time and place.

    If Americans can’t agree to respect our country through respecting the flag and national anthem, I really worry about the future of the United States.

  3. Why don’t they just cancel Thursday night football and show 3hr NFL protests from London commercial free.

    I’m sure everyone would watch…

  4. I’m pretty sure we are going to see kneeling in the stands. Probably assaults in the stands as a result of that. I think that is going to unfortunately be the next step. Extremism is vastly more popular then understanding and toleration.

    In a free melting pot society we are all going to see things from time to time that make us a little uncomfortable. That’s the price we free folk pay for our own brand of freedom. My freedom Your freedom Their freedom. Whose freedom is more important?

    In the end the football players are going to appear more civilized than the fans. Until we can get back to toleration and start ignoring the extremist things will only get worse and likely lead to violence. Especially when one person declares their freedom is more valuable than other peoples freedoms.

  5. This whole thing has gone beyond stupid. They have a perfect solution, one the league operated under for almost all of its existence. On field personnel stay in the locker rooms until it is time to play the game. No one had a problem with this before why do you now?

    This is the danger of wrapping yourself in the flag for false reasons. The general public don’t even understand that having the players on the sideline is so federal government can keep shoving this war down our throats even though it should have been over a long time by now but where is the profit in that? You guys don’t care about the soldier, you just like how it feels to act all “patriotic”.

  6. 1. Roll back to 2008, before teams went on the field for the anthem.
    -OR-
    2. All players stand for anthem, no weed testing.

  7. Any public display of disrespect is going to be met by backlash. NFL needs to create a video page attached to NFL.com where players can upload their viewpoints or grievances and fans who care what they have to say can visit & watch. The National Anthem is a show of patriotism and solidarity among US citizens, it’s NOT their forum for taking a stance against some perceived wrong.

  8. It bugs me to see that this is an issue that needs two side to negotiate. I’m losing interest in everything in today’s culture and society. It’s become worse than “controversial”, it’s now officially boring.

    At least the 60s has good music during the cultural meltdown. And feminists like Jane Fonda wore barbarella gear

  9. To avoid more kneeling than at any given Sunday at the Vatican, the two sides should think outside the box. At the beginning of last season, Cleveland produced a video that played on their large screen prior to the anthem. Any member of the Browns family who wished, shared their feelings individually or in a group. Several players, coaches and the owner respectfully took advantage. Then the anthem played, everyone stood and problem solved. Consider this type of alternative and a number of hard feelings could be avoided.

  10. The 2018 World Cup showed teams from 32 countries who don’t suffer from racism, income inequality, corruption etc…as a result the players took joy in standing and often singing their country’s national anthem on the sports world’s biggest stage!!! But here in the USA, we have real problems that those other 32 countries don’t have, therefore our players need to protest during the anthem to solve these issues…such noble people they are!

  11. eagle100x says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:48 am
    I can’t believe we are at this point in our country that everyone can’t respect the flag and national anthem. It’s supposed to be about being grateful for the things we have, not protesting the things that need to be fixed. And there’s not just one issue that could /should be changed (As there always has been) but the players have chosen this one issue.

    Protesting has always been part of America, but pick a better time and place.

    If Americans can’t agree to respect our country through respecting the flag and national anthem, I really worry about the future of the United States.
    —————————————————–
    Please share with us how you feel about bone spurs.

  12. How about the league tell all the players to stand or else. No bargaining!!! Just stand and look stupid like you are!

  13. Forced Nationalism. Look up the leaders throughout history that forced this on institutions in their countries.

    The real discussion should be uncovering the Gov’t budget that goes to sports for the anthem, flyovers, and color guard.

    Now, I am not saying I do not enjoy the anthem, I love America. I also love human rights. There is a separation between first amendment rights and flexing them in the workplace.

    Here is the solution, play the anthem, and then have the teams come out with their over-the-top celebrations.

  14. Haven’t seen ONE Player protest or do anything to improve the perceived ‘injustices’ they claim during this off season.

    Have seen several domestic violence, dui, drug arrests of NFL players this off season though.

    Cold hard facts.

  15. Liberalsruineverything says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:45 am
    Inmates are running the asylum.
    ——————
    FYI, it’s “inmates running the prison” or “lunatics running the asylum”.

  16. Any “agreement” must be approached with great caution. If they agree that the players can protest police brutality on the field, what is next? The agreement must cover all protests. Would the media be as involved and adamant about the players rights if a group decided to protest abortion? I think not. The NFL/NFLPA could open a real bag of snakes by allowing any protest on the field.
    As for the military paying for the anthem playing, are the players willing to give up revenue because they do not like an advertiser? I know the owners are not.

  17. Like one commenter said above, play a 1 min video on the board right before the anthem that shows positive examples of (insert cause here). Show players out in the community doing their thing. Nothing spurs more action like showing inspiring acts of others. JJ Watt and his flood relief come to mind. If the kneeling still went on, I think at that point it’s about defiance to authority and an employer is totally within his right to suspend an employee.

  18. They should encourage every player to engage in some sort of action during the anthem so that the social issue or cause that is most important to them is recognized. Some players can kneel, others can stand on one one leg, bark, some sit or lay down, etc. Maybe at this point it will become massively clear to everybody how stupid this entire thing has gotten.

  19. “I can’t believe we are at this point in our country that everyone can’t respect the flag and national anthem. It’s supposed to be about being grateful for the things we have, not protesting the things that need to be fixed. And there’s not just one issue that could /should be changed (As there always has been) but the players have chosen this one issue.

    Protesting has always been part of America, but pick a better time and place.”
    ———————————————————————————-
    “The league should have swooped in two years ago and struck a deal with the NFLPA to make standing mandatory, right after Colin Kaepernick was first spotted sitting during the anthem”
    ———————————————————————————–
    Its time that this issue was put to rest in its proper perspective. I do understand how some people get their feathers ruffled regarding social issues, and there should be a venue for them to voice that…just not when paying patrons ( who may have a variance on whatever “protest” is being aired ) are supplementing the aforementioned “protest” with their own disposable income. Professional athletes ( or others in the public eye ) should protest if they feel so inclined. But, being the fact that they make much more than the average working citizen, they should organize, advertise, and hold such protests outside whatever arena they work in. I get upset about varied social issues and situations….but I don’t expect my customers to watch me proclaim my unrest about whatever that issue is when they are paying for my time.

  20. The odds of a PO hitting someone with a round from 12 feet out is 6%. The bad guy has a 1%. There should be far less shootouts. I learned this after getting into a massive gunfight with 2 guys from 20 feet. The 3 of us won, those 2 lost but thank goodness it was 3 AM (30 rounds later, which is not a lot these days but back then it was).

    Since then, I just took cover. No more gun fights.

    Training (awareness) and more importantly, screening, can solve 90% of the police problems.

    The whole inner city cycle of violence etc has been going on for centuries. I don’t have any answer for that except, perhaps, education. But that is never fair. Life is not fair. So I’ve been told and have seen and learned. Wish it was…

  21. If you look at revenues over the past 3 years, they’ve actually gone up, so saying this is costing the league money is false.

    Have teams wait in the locker room while the anthem is played…just like they did since pretty much the dawn of time till ‘The Great Patriotic Cash Grab of 2008’

  22. The Russian trolls are filling their oats bright and early this morning on the PFT comment boards. We should let Putin decide how the players behave and then take pictures of Putin and Trump hugging and winking at each other.

  23. How about the GOP expand their recently introduced bill, the Mulliganski Act, to include players that kneel. That way it would be fair to “both sides”.

  24. streetyson says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:13 am
    Liberalsruineverything says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:45 am
    Inmates are running the asylum.
    ——————
    FYI, it’s “inmates running the prison” or “lunatics running the asylum”.
    ——————

    As per usual, you are wrong.

  25. kennadrin says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:46 am
    You are smoking crack right? No hard evidence?

    —————————–

    The NFL just reported record profits. RECORD PROFITS!! So you must be the one person on the planet that thinks TV ratings are more indicative of popularity than money. I assure not one owner agrees with you.

  26. The players hold the cards on this one,
    ===============================================

    In the end, the customer always holds the cards.

  27. bannedfromchoirpractice says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:28 am
    The Russian trolls are filling their oats bright and early this morning on the PFT comment boards. We should let Putin decide how the players behave and then take pictures of Putin and Trump hugging and winking at each other.
    ===========================================

    What’s wrong with Putin? Hillary hit the reset button. Obama said to tell you the 1980’s want their foreign policy back.

  28. As per usual, you are wrong.

    —-

    actually all three versions have been used. However if anyone is referencing Bob McNair’s quote, it is “inmates running the prison”

  29. This is a loser issue and can only be solved by not playing the National Anthem. Players have every right to freedom of speech on their own time. Regardless of the issue protested it divides fans, teams and does nothing to promote the recreation and enjoyment of pro football. End it and the controversy.

  30. Give the players the money that the military pays the NFL to do this and suddenly it will all change. Oh you guys didn’t know? The NFL pockets a boatload if cash for doing the anthem before the game.

  31. Fly Eagles Fly says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:47 am
    kennadrin says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:46 am
    You are smoking crack right? No hard evidence?

    —————————–

    The NFL just reported record profits. RECORD PROFITS!! So you must be the one person on the planet that thinks TV ratings are more indicative of popularity than money. I assure not one owner agrees with you.
    ===============================================

    And if you read where the record profits came from you would know it came from the contracts with the networks and cable companies. Contracts that were already signed. It has nothing to do with fans and viewership.

  32. Maybe we just let players do what they’d like, kneel, stand, whatever – and we all go back to NOT AIRING the National Anthem! Just as they always did! So we, as fans, can go back to getting chips and drinks during those extra commercials!

    Another radical thought: Stop playing the national anthem at games. World War II has ended, so I think we’re good.

  33. If you kneel, you don’t play. If you don’t play you don’t get paid… very simple. That’s how the fans have to work, we listen to our employers or we get fired.

  34. Between abolishing ICE and kneeling for the anthem, it’s almost like the left wants to lose badly in the midterms.

  35. kennadrin says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:46 am
    You are smoking crack right? No hard evidence?

    ———————

    What is the evidence? You can’t show any and revenue didn’t drop at all. Ratings are down across all TV because of online viewing. As far as age grouping people over 40 haven’t dropped of at all. Hate to break this to you but controversy sells, always has and always will. Want proof? Look at the stories about the anthem and the ones just about football and look at how many comments each have. Look at Rush Limbaugh or Howard Stern, even their haters tune just to get offended.

  36. There is such an easy solution to all this, just have ALL the teams stay in the locker room when the anthem plays and have player introductions and coin toss after that. SIMPLE. Why is everyone making this so hard.

  37. staff2cj says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:11 am
    fyi Slavery is OVER, owners!
    —————————————————————————————–
    What does trying to keep your employees from doing something that turns customers away have to do with slavery? Lets not pretend racism is only white against black. There is a big difference between wanting to make a problem better and just wanting to complain to act like you have an excuse for poor behavior.

  38. Start talking about protesting police violence against citizens and POOF! Snowflake city. I have said it before, who raised these sad excuses for men? Real men stand up for others. Real men speak truth. Real men keep their mouths shut when they dont know what they are talking about. Real men dont make excuses and engage in petty arguments with resentful little punks. What you are seeing start to happen, real men (and women) are emerging to slap down the punks. It is happening. Might want to think about it before grabbing women’s asses, calling brown people names, and other hateful, cowardly things you really did not think through. Some people actually know how to throw a real punch pansies, best check yourselves. This comment has everything to do with the kiddie squabbles above.

  39. The NFL has let themselves be played on this from the very beginning and still aren’t getting it. Trump hates the NFL and nothing they do will get them his approval. If they went full-out Draconian on the anthem then Trump would find a way to change his mind and then hammer them for being too hard on the players.

  40. Michael E says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:49 am

    What’s wrong with Putin? Hillary hit the reset button. Obama said to tell you the 1980’s want their foreign policy back.
    ===========================================

    You sound like a Putin fan. No big surprise there.

  41. “What’s wrong with Putin?”

    So you support the President of the United States stating that he believes Putin over our own intelligence agencies? You support the President of the United States allowing Russia to interrogate our intelligence agents? Actions that the Senate censured by an 88-0 vote.

    What country’s anthem do you want the players to stand for?

  42. Anecdotal to be sure, but if the protests are causing so many fans to abandon the NFL then why are so many of them still so active on these boards? Anybody who monitors NFL sites so closely they can be first in on every article on this topic is almost certainly still watching the games. They’re like the jilted boyfriend who tells you he’s totally over his ex as he sits texting her while parked in front of her house.

  43. “Between abolishing ICE”.

    An agency that cages small children like chickens should be abolished. An agency that harasses and kills the helpless who have come seeking freedom from those very same atrocities does not represent what the USA is supposed to stand for.

  44. They’re treating this as if it affects the game. Until a muscle is pulled trying to kneel, let it be. I don’t get the fascination. This has been a dud of a story for two years that the NFL has been trying to squeeze every last drop out of. Wish they had this same energy while dealing with brain trauma and CTE and mental illness.

    And to you calling for game checks to be forfeited, would you give up your check if your “boss” (quotations because the owners aren’t bosses, they’re partners with the players) told you he’ll dock your pay if you pray before your lunch? An act that in no way, shape or form affects your work performance?

  45. “What’s wrong with Putin?”

    ——

    the guy that directed attacks (the word meddled does not even come close to describing it correctly) on our democracy, the very core of our country….and you ask that question?

    That Trump does not unconditionally support the finding of our US intelligence agencies and unconditionally demand that Russia ceases all activities against us shows he puts Russia above the US. It is impossible to be any more clear.

  46. Two things that I am dumbfounded by in this article.
    1. No hard evidence
    2. Players hold the cards
    *You have angry fans turning games off and avoiding stsdiums. Revenues maintained only because of TV deals. If you think revenues did not suffer from what they could have been then you need to have your head checked.
    *The owners absolutely can and should mandate that while “on the clock” players only exhibit behaviors that are in the best interest of the club and league. This means stand and pay respects during anthem.
    These is not a collectively bargained subject. Not everything has to be bargained. Language already exists in the CBA. This is just a clarification to existing policy.

  47. NFL players can’t sell add space on their uniforms.
    NFL players can’t use legal substances deemed performance enhancing.
    NFL players can’t engage in off-field criminal acts with impunity.
    NFL players can’t protest the National Anthem on the field.

    They’re called rules.

    The players need to get over themselves and find a more productive way to promote social change.

  48. hardheadedrb says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:19 am

    Like one commenter said above, play a 1 min video on the board right before the anthem that shows positive examples of (insert cause here). Show players out in the community doing their thing.
    ———————–

    I doubt that you could find enough to fill even 30 seconds.

  49. ” in the city were our collective freedoms were secured more than 240 years ago.” Maybe where our freedoms were established, but our freedoms need to be secured every day. Ironically by the very people some players choose to publicly disrespect by kneeling for the anthem.

  50. bannedfromchoirpractice says:
    July 20, 2018 at 10:35 am
    Michael E says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:49 am

    What’s wrong with Putin? Hillary hit the reset button. Obama said to tell you the 1980’s want their foreign policy back.
    ===========================================

    You sound like a Putin fan. No big surprise there.

    ———

    Well it was Hillary and Team-O that sold Russia 20% of our country’s uranium. But the Clinton Foundation did get almost $200M in kickbacks to I guess that made it OK then…

    As for Trump, he is buffoon but I really don’t see what he has to do with Goodell’s mismanagement of the Anthem thing. He should have nipped this thing in the bud when it started and use the NBA model as an example. These guys have every right to protest….on their own time. But it is just bad business to irritate or alienate even a small percentage of your customers….for any reason. After all, the NFL is a business….not a political action group.

  51. “Players opinions on things other than football are no more important than other people’s views”.

    And your opinions are no more important than the player’s. So why are you so offended about something that happens during two minutes of your day? It’s not like anything that anyone does during the anthem has any effect on your personal life.

  52. 345snarkavenue says:
    July 20, 2018 at 10:49 am

    the guy that directed attacks (the word meddled does not even come close to describing it correctly) on our democracy, the very core of our country….and you ask that question?
    ————————

    Meddling in elections is what countries do, and the United States is likely in the top 5 of countries that meddle. Even Hillary Clinton was guilty of meddling in the last election, along with the entirety of the liberal media.

  53. antkowiak666 says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:05 am

    NHL>NFL
    ——————————-
    NHL players are mostly white foreigners. The black power anthem protests are not even an issue. It’s not even comparable.

  54. 345snarkavenue says:
    July 20, 2018 at 10:49 am
    “What’s wrong with Putin?”

    ——

    the guy that directed attacks (the word meddled does not even come close to describing it correctly) on our democracy, the very core of our country….and you ask that question?

    That Trump does not unconditionally support the finding of our US intelligence agencies and unconditionally demand that Russia ceases all activities against us shows he puts Russia above the US. It is impossible to be any more clear.
    ========================================================

    Obama was told in the summer of 2016 that Russia was trying to influence the election and he told the agencies to stand down and do nothing. But I still would like someone to tell me how Putin made me vote for Trump and not Hillary.

  55. Anybody remember when Mike Tomlin chastised Bronze Star Army vet Alejandro Villanueva for wanting to respect the National Anthem? That’s how bad it is folks, the disdain for our country is not just with the players but the coaches as well. I see another big loss of proud Americans for the protest league.

  56. People saying players aren’t doing anything in the community need to get off of TMZ.

    Just because the mainstream media doesn’t promote it (less clicks) doesn’t mean its not happening. Go on your local team’s website and social media (even follow players individually) and see all the good things players are doing throughout the league.

    Its not all social justice stuff obviously, but funding youth centers or running free camps for kids is much more than many of us on here are doing for our communities.

    During the season, much of this is limited to Tuesdays (off day) but this time of year players have more time to spend with communites or taking other philanthropical actions and its nice to see how many are willing to help.

  57. It helps to remember that the Russians hacked the election by getting Podesta to click on a basic phishing email with the express approval of a DNC IT staffer. That these are the same “Party of science” socialists who now think anthems and tackle football are bad really says it all.

  58. eagle100x says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:48 am

    I can’t believe we are at this point in our country that everyone can’t respect the flag and national anthem. It’s supposed to be about being grateful for the things we have, not protesting the things that need to be fixed. And there’s not just one issue that could /should be changed (As there always has been) but the players have chosen this one issue.

    Protesting has always been part of America, but pick a better time and place.

    If Americans can’t agree to respect our country through respecting the flag and national anthem, I really worry about the future of the United States.

    – I believe the country would start getting its proper respect from players, just as soon as the people the players are protesting for start to get respect from this country. In case you haven’t noticed, the level of disrespect from people in charge of running our country is getting higher and higher instead of lower. (IE…black people getting the police called on them for bbqing, being at a public pool, sitting in starbucks). Or unarmed minorites getting killed while white nationals commit horrific mass murders and are taken in custosy with no harm and even politely treated)

    The reason these players are speaking up because their voice and platform is much bigger than the average joe. No one cares if a mother is on TV after her unarmed 12 yr old is murdered by police in a case of mistaken identity, but the whole world is up in arms because a football player takes a knee. Its called awareness.

  59. Meddling in elections is what countries do, and the United States is likely in the top 5 of countries that meddle. Even Hillary Clinton was guilty of meddling in the last election, along with the entirety of the liberal media.

    ——–

    “likely”….what is that supposed to mean….you are guessing?

    so we’re supposed to stand around and say….”c’mon back for more?”

    I can’t believe I even need to make this argument to other Americans

  60. It helps to remember that the Russians hacked the election by getting Podesta to click on a basic phishing email with the express approval of a DNC IT staffer

    ——-

    so that makes it okay? is that what you argue?

  61. Okay…this comment section has morphed into something completely insane. Any one who thinks the U.S. doesn’t attempt to influence all other countries elections is a moron.

  62. factschecker says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:53 am
    I’m pretty sure we are going to see kneeling in the stands. Probably assaults in the stands as a result of that.
    —————————-

    There is no way I would ever kneel on that floor. And if another person does there is no way I want to touch them afterward. Yuck.

  63. staff2cj says:
    July 20, 2018 at 9:11 am
    fyi Slavery is OVER, owners!

    ——————
    Any comparison between being asked to do as told in exchange for millions of dollars in salary to slavery shows a total lack of grasp of the horrors of slavery.

  64. rcali says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:17 am
    Anybody remember when Mike Tomlin chastised Bronze Star Army vet Alejandro Villanueva for wanting to respect the National Anthem?
    ___________
    Hard to remember something that didn’t happen.

  65. Obama was told in the summer of 2016 that Russia was trying to influence the election and he told the agencies to stand down and do nothing. But I still would like someone to tell me how Putin made me vote for Trump and not Hillary

    —-

    Obama made a mistake. I have no problem saying that. So, are you arguing that we should continue Obama’s mistake?

    At this point it really doesn’t matter a whole lot if anyone changed their vote; Trump is president. What does matter is that the US stands up to Russia and says “No More”.

  66. Be careful Mike, the orange Mussolini is cozying up to Vlad. You may find yourself being “interviewed” by Russian investigators.

  67. vargavarga says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:33 am
    Okay…this comment section has morphed into something completely insane. Any one who thinks the U.S. doesn’t attempt to influence all other countries elections is a moron.

    ——–

    are you arguing that we let other countries influence our elections reproach?

  68. 345snarkavenue says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:23 am
    It helps to remember that the Russians hacked the election by getting Podesta to click on a basic phishing email with the express approval of a DNC IT staffer

    ——-

    so that makes it okay? is that what you argue?

    ———-

    Was it OK when Obama went to the UK to make a speech to try and convince the British to remain in the EU? Was that not “Meddling”?

    This whole thing is just the hysterical Left over-reacting about mouse-nuts. In fact, even Obama went on record during the election and claimed that no foreign nation has the ability to impact the outcome of an American election. Of course that is because he believed Hillary would win. The Lefties only changed their tune when Hillary lost!

  69. are you arguing that we let other countries influence our elections reproach?

    No…I’m arguing we’re hypocrits and perhaps we should fix our own actions before trying to fix others…

  70. nhpats says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:43 am

    Was it OK when Obama went to the UK to make a speech to try and convince the British to remain in the EU? Was that not “Meddling”?

    This whole thing is just the hysterical Left over-reacting about mouse-nuts. In fact, even Obama went on record during the election and claimed that no foreign nation has the ability to impact the outcome of an American election. Of course that is because he believed Hillary would win. The Lefties only changed their tune when Hillary lost!
    ________________________

    Is that anything like the election being rigged until the right won?

  71. Love it.

    The old style of ‘go to the back and shut up black man’ needs to be done with.

    We’re not talking about the anthem anymore. We’re talking about equal rights for everyone. I mean heck, these men can’t even take a knee without being fined or attacked by the President?!

    This is Amurikkka!

  72. No…I’m arguing we’re hypocrits and perhaps we should fix our own actions before trying to fix others…

    ——–

    that’s not what you said, but I will take it at face value. maybe fix both at the same time would be better.

  73. I live in a team town. I see players around all the time. Surprise! Players are like any other group of people. Some really great, some really rotten. Most varying degrees in between. I”ve seen a 300lb lineman walk onto a HS girls volleyball court in the park and proceed to look foolish. Just because it was fun. He signed autographs, took pics with all the kids in the park. I saw a different player refuse to even acknowledge a kid’s existence when asked for an autograph.

    That said, I also strongly disagree with the players intentional disrespect of the flag.

    Whoever said upthread that Trump should unconditionally accept what out Intel services say is an idiot. Our intel services have had spectacular failures. And it’s really funny that these are the same people who condemned Bush 43 for believing his Intel services.

  74. “So good luck, NFL and NFLPA, as you try to solve this one. While you’re at it, go ahead and try to extend the CBA, cure cancer, achieve world peace, and figure out whether Tony Soprano was still alive after the screen went dark.”

    I always knew you totally got this, Florio. People want to jump in from all sides of this argument and provide their $0.02, but it turns out that nothing matters.

    Let’s say that there are 1,000 different paths they could take on this. Outside of closing down the league, or kicking out all the “questionable” players, the people that have kept this going will be going down guns blazing on it. IT DOESN’T ACTUALLY MATTER WHAT THE NFL/NFLPA DO. All of this nonsense and back-and-forth is exactly as intended. Our chief executive lucked into a seemingly divisive topic that would likely proceed through his 2-4 years in office.

    Think about it. If the NFL/NFLPA force all players to stand, and one of the previous kneelers wears a sticker, the chief executive will be outraged. If the NFL/NFLPA force all players to stand, and the camera man continues to take video, the president will be outraged. There will always be something to potentially be outraged about – there is no scenario where supposed outrage will not enter the equation.

  75. I don’t agree Mike, The league should not have “swooped in”. Freedom of speech, including the right to protest the direction of our country, was granted by the Founders. Some of us have fought for that right, and even today I would lay down my life so that Americans can retain it. This isn’t like “you shouldn’t touch a woman inappropriately in the office.” This is like “YOU MUST WEAR A LAPEL PIN TO BE CONSIDERED A REAL AMERICAN,” or “YOU MUST RECITE THE PLEDGE OR PUT A FLAG ON YOUR LAWN ON JULY 4TH” kind of crap. PR aside? This is an American right, change only happens when people don’t conform (news flash, we didn’t conform in 1775-1783 either).

  76. Was it OK when Obama went to the UK to make a speech to try and convince the British to remain in the EU? Was that not “Meddling”?

    This whole thing is just the hysterical Left over-reacting about mouse-nuts. In fact, even Obama went on record during the election and claimed that no foreign nation has the ability to impact the outcome of an American election. Of course that is because he believed Hillary would win. The Lefties only changed their tune when Hillary lost!

    ——

    Obama was in the open, speaking publicly. Are you arguing that is against the law?

    SObama said no other nation could impact our election. So…he can’t be wrong on this but is wrong on every other move he has ever made. Not sure if that is your argument, but that is what it implies, within the context of your many other comments about him.

  77. 345snarkavenue says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:22 am

    “likely”….what is that supposed to mean….you are guessing?

    so we’re supposed to stand around and say….”c’mon back for more?”

    I can’t believe I even need to make this argument to other Americans
    ———————–

    Election meddling is going to happen whether we want it to or not. Quite frankly, if alleged Facebook posts swayed an election, we have a lot more to worry about than the Russians. I am a little confused as to why the Russians would even want to help a wildcard like Trump get elected, when the Democrats were already in their pocket.

  78. Funny how there was no such outrage over the DNC and Hillary colluding to rig the election against Bernie. Talk about fixing an election. They basically decided who our choice was going to be. Now they want to act like their hands are clean.

    I’d still much rather have Trump than Hillary. The Dems lost because that was the choice they forced us to make.

  79. I would love to see at the doors of the stadiums to have donation bin so that fans could chose to give to the causes the players are advocating for. In turn, the players could stand for the anthem. I think most people are willing to acknowledge that these issues exist , and that most of the players are proud to be Americans. It’s a win win in my eyes. Maybe I’m crazy being Canadian and all. 😉

  80. Whoever said upthread that Trump should unconditionally accept what out Intel services say is an idiot. Our intel services have had spectacular failures. And it’s really funny that these are the same people who condemned Bush 43 for believing his Intel services.

    —–

    I think you are talking about me, however you changed the words of what I said. I did not say ‘accept’, I said support.

    He is still entitled to not accept the findings, but that should be done in private, with those involved.

    one say he says he believes them, the next day he says something different. Publicly, he should support them until there is evidence otherwise.

    he waffles on the issue daily.

  81. Obama also interfered in an Israeli election. May have been the reason the guy he was trying to oust ended up winning.

    TrueFBFan, this is not a free speech issue. Work place laws mean employers can prohibit these protests. The players are at work, in company uniforms, performing company functions. There have been no restrictions put on their speech outside of their work.

  82. Who would be faster? The guy who ran 4.3 at the combine or deplorables rushing to defend the first amendment if the white players knelt to protest mueller’s “witch hunt”?

  83. Chris M says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:56 am
    Did anyone else have to look up magnanimity? Ooh, look at the big brain on Florio…
    _________________
    He has the thesaurus website book marked, trust me.’
    He’s not as smart as he thinks he is.

  84. I am a little confused as to why the Russians would even want to help a wildcard like Trump get elected, when the Democrats were already in their pocket.

    —–

    I do agree with you on this. there are numerous theories, none which have been proven, and I’m not going to argue any are true, because I don’t know. It could be all of them, a subset of them, or none at all.

  85. 345snarkavenue says:
    July 20, 2018 at 12:01 pm
    Was it OK when Obama went to the UK to make a speech to try and convince the British to remain in the EU? Was that not “Meddling”?

    This whole thing is just the hysterical Left over-reacting about mouse-nuts. In fact, even Obama went on record during the election and claimed that no foreign nation has the ability to impact the outcome of an American election. Of course that is because he believed Hillary would win. The Lefties only changed their tune when Hillary lost!

    ——

    Obama was in the open, speaking publicly. Are you arguing that is against the law?

    SObama said no other nation could impact our election. So…he can’t be wrong on this but is wrong on every other move he has ever made. Not sure if that is your argument, but that is what it implies, within the context of your many other comments about him.

    —————-

    Who ever said Obama was wrong about every move he has made? Obama is a very intelligent and articulate guy. I may disagree with many of his policies, but he is certainly no dummy and made many decent decisions as well. And even though I did not vote for him, I still saw him as our/my President because….well he was. He won the election and that is how it works. The Left used to be able to handle losing an election. When did they become such crybabies?

  86. nfl is suffering from an obvious dearth of leadership. the fact that this is still going on is a stain on the game, one it will never recover from. the fact that goodell somehow fleeced the owners to re-sign him should be considered a mini miracle. goodell is as toxic as a person can get. nobody from any team likes that guy. the nfl peaked. all down hill from here..forget the protests for a moment, the game is a shell of it’s former self from even a decade ago. it’s over guys.

  87. Mike – you can post all the links you want saying that there has been no tangible effect on the league’s business due to the players standing, but it is easy enough to see due to all of the comments on the multitude of articles written on the subject – people DO care. And have spoken with their wallets. Dick Cass, president of the Ravens – has been the only one brave enough to come out and say it.

    And I can also say a few of those empty seats came from me not buying a game or two like I do every year. And I definitely know there are many that live around me in the more conservative western part of MD that feel the same way.

    What the players fail to understand in all of this – is that perception is everything.

  88. factschecker says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:53 am
    I’m pretty sure we are going to see kneeling in the stands.
    _____________
    I’m pretty sure you are wrong.
    1) There is no room to attempt it.
    2) The stadium floor is pretty damn nasty.
    3) Everybody in their section would give them crap the whole game, and his neighbor would probably give him a knee to the grill while he’s “kneeling”.

  89. Let’s all come together as one and join Pres. Trump as he loudly and proudly sings the national anthem of The Soviet Union! Talk about respecting America…the hypocrisy!

  90. 345snarkavenue says:
    July 20, 2018 at 12:08 pm
    Whoever said upthread that Trump should unconditionally accept what out Intel services say is an idiot. Our intel services have had spectacular failures. And it’s really funny that these are the same people who condemned Bush 43 for believing his Intel services.

    ———————————————–

    Exactly. The entire Vietnam War was based off false “intelligence” regarding an event that never happened (Gulf of Tonkin). They dropped the ball on 9-11, and then there was Operation Iraqi Freedom. Do Weapons of Mass Destruction ring a bell? Again, false information. Those are just three examples. We’re not even counting Bay of Pigs, The Iran Revolution in the late 70s, and the fall of the Soviet Union all of which the CIA got wrong.

    Shouldn’t the “Intelligence community” go out and earn a little credibility first, before we continue to believe whatever new agenda line they feed us?

  91. At this point, I’m tired of the whole thing. Let them protest all they want. But require them to inform us what they are specifically protesting AND what they are doing (besides protesting) to make a difference. If they aren’t doing anything besides protesting it means nothing.

    I guarantee you, whatever the players are protesting is lost in the whole discussion about the protest itself.

  92. rcali says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:17 am
    Anybody remember when Mike Tomlin chastised Bronze Star Army vet Alejandro Villanueva for wanting to respect the National Anthem? That’s how bad it is folks, the disdain for our country is not just with the players but the coaches as well. I see another big loss of proud Americans for the protest league.
    ———————-
    No I Don’t……
    And neither do you.
    This is the problem with your ilk.
    Denial, Deflection and Dishonesty.

  93. 345snark; I apologize for misremembering your quote.

    Why should he support them? Have they supported him? I’m not talking about the directors Trump appointed. I am talking about the rank and file. An FBI agent guaranteeing his FBI girlfriend that Trump was not going to be allowed to win the election. Saying they had an insurance policy to prevent it. The heads of the DNI and CIA saying they knew about Russian meddling and did nothing. Look at it from Trump’s perspective. Would you trust any of these agencies?

  94. Rate This
    Chris M says:
    July 20, 2018 at 8:56 am
    Did anyone else have to look up magnanimity? Ooh, look at the big brain on Florio…
    —————-
    A great word used perfectly in the sentence. But your right, Florio should use better judgement and dumb things down a bit……knowing what he knows about most posters on this board.

  95. 1winningdrive says:
    July 20, 2018 at 12:15 pm
    Mike – you can post all the links you want saying that there has been no tangible effect on the league’s business due to the players standing, but it is easy enough to see due to all of the comments on the multitude of articles written on the subject – people DO care. And have spoken with their wallets. Dick Cass, president of the Ravens – has been the only one brave enough to come out and say it.

    And I can also say a few of those empty seats came from me not buying a game or two like I do every year. And I definitely know there are many that live around me in the more conservative western part of MD that feel the same way.

    What the players fail to understand in all of this – is that perception is everything.

    ————————————

    First of all a majority of the money comes from TV rights

    Second the players still got paid

    Third and most important the only places that had empty seats are the places with lousy teams. If you think people are staying away because of the anthem protests I suggest you take a trip to Foxboro, MA.

  96. Who ever said Obama was wrong about every move he has made? Obama is a very intelligent and articulate guy. I may disagree with many of his policies, but he is certainly no dummy and made many decent decisions as well. And even though I did not vote for him, I still saw him as our/my President because….well he was. He won the election and that is how it works. The Left used to be able to handle losing an election. When did they become such crybabies?

    —–

    I can’t recall you ever commenting here on anything that you agreed with Obama. If I am wrong, then please accept my apology. I do recall you disagreeing or voicing complaints. And that is why I said “within the context of your comments here”.

    as far as your left crybaby question….I’ll leave that to others to answer. I am registered as ‘undeclared’….I vote for people, not parties. Unfortunately….there are less and less people that run on being an individual, and you pretty much get the party’s full agenda when you vote for someone these days. It used to be different.

    I miss the old days.

  97. To the people using the comments section to determine the general sentiment on this issue: give me a break. You are the ones keeping this topic alive. 90+% of NFL fans just want this to end and don’t care either way what happens. That’s why all of the comments seem to be representing one side of the argument. Only one side cares to even make this an issue. It has required the chief executive and people like you to continue fanning it, putting enough oxygen on it to keep it going.

    Trust me. The rest of us just want to watch/read/talk about football. That is why they don’t make an effort to come all the way down into the comments section and get all bothered about this. They don’t care.

  98. rcali says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:17 am
    Anybody remember when Mike Tomlin chastised Bronze Star Army vet Alejandro Villanueva for wanting to respect the National Anthem? That’s how bad it is folks, the disdain for our country is not just with the players but the coaches as well. I see another big loss of proud Americans for the protest league.

    ———–
    I don’t remember Tomlin or anyone doing anything of the sort. But I will say this, if Tomlin decided that the entire team would remain in the locker room during the anthem then Villanueva should have remained there with his team. Tomlin (for good or bad) is the Leader of the team and all of the players should respect that.

  99. Rdog says:

    July 20, 2018 at 11:15 am

    antkowiak666 says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:05 am

    NHL>NFL
    ——————————-
    NHL players are mostly white foreigners. The black power anthem protests are not even an issue. It’s not even comparable.
    ——————————————————————————-
    My comment had nothing to do with he protests. I just prefer the NHL, no politics involved, just pure sports entertainment.

  100. For the last time, stop repeating the urban myth that until recently teams stayed in the locker room during the anthem. I’ve been watching since the early 1970s. They were standing for the anthem then and they were standing even before that. Go to youtube so you can see it for yourself! Google some images. YEEESSSH!

  101. @crush22 says:
    I’m pretty sure you are wrong.
    1) There is no room to attempt it.
    2) The stadium floor is pretty damn nasty.
    3) Everybody in their section would give them crap the whole game, and his neighbor would probably give him a knee to the grill while he’s “kneeling”.
    ———————————————————————————-
    And deal with the assault charges? I’m sure you think it will be worth it. There won’t be any accepting your apology while you stand sobbing before the judge.

  102. papathorson says:
    July 20, 2018 at 1:03 pm
    For the last time, stop repeating the urban myth that until recently teams stayed in the locker room during the anthem. I’ve been watching since the early 1970s. They were standing for the anthem then and they were standing even before that. Go to youtube so you can see it for yourself! Google some images. YEEESSSH!

    ——————–

    Your memory is very wrong. The rule changed in 2008, before that they where only on the sidelines for big games like the Super Bowl. Like many others you simply deny facts.

  103. I am having a hard time understanding the controversy here. Players are paid to play football as a form of entertainment to the fans who spend time and money purchasing tickets, snacks, memorabilia etc from a business ran by the owners. As an owner you want to not keep away any potential fans and one would think that players would be in agreement with that as their salaries are based on revenues as well. If you offend enough fans and/or potential fans you begin to limit the number of people willing to spend time and money on your product and there is less income for the owners and players to split.

    That is a lose, lose, lose situation for all involved. Quit playing the anthem, or stay in the locker room or just stand up and show a little respect for the flag. Pick one. This mess is caused by violating one of the two rules I was taught as a child before I even had my first job, never discuss politic nor religion at work. No ifs, ands or buts. Just don’t do it.

    What I do know is that in the next couple of year there will be some competition in addition to college ball for people’s entertainment dollars and this behavior is going to help them take a piece of that pie and yes there is a limit to that pie so there could be a decline in income for all if they keep acting the fool.

  104. It seems pretty simple to me.
    The NFL should just call the players’ bluff.

    They say it isn’t about the flag, it isn’t about the anthem.

    Ok, prove it. The NFL should say Ok, if it isn’t about those things here are X number of other ways you can protest as an NFL player:
    -You can protest during the coin flip
    -You can protest during warmups
    -You can protest here, there, etc.

    If it’s truly not about protesting the flag or the anthem shouldn’t the players be fine about that?

    It’s THEIR obsession over that particular moment that is keeping this going, not the owners, not the President, not the fans that don’t like it.

    They are pushing back at any attempt to divert things away from the small fraction of time during an NFL game presentation the anthem is being played.

    Call their bluff, if its about things beyond the anthem and flag shouldn’t they be fine with protests taking place at other points of an NFL Sunday?

  105. BuckyBadger says:
    July 20, 2018 at 1:15 pm
    papathorson says:
    July 20, 2018 at 1:03 pm
    For the last time, stop repeating the urban myth that until recently teams stayed in the locker room during the anthem. I’ve been watching since the early 1970s. They were standing for the anthem then and they were standing even before that. Go to youtube so you can see it for yourself! Google some images. YEEESSSH!

    ——————–

    Your memory is very wrong. The rule changed in 2008, before that they where only on the sidelines for big games like the Super Bowl. Like many others you simply deny facts.


    Please stop. Google Bud Grant’s anthem policy.

  106. youngnoizecom says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:19 am

    If you want to see mental midgets, look at the people who have no idea what the players are kneeling for.
    ——————–

    At this point, it doesn’t really matter why and for what they are kneeling. It’s become a pointless gesture, and is more about defiance than actually being in protest of something meaningful. If they were really serious, they would sit out some games. That would get them some real attention. Of course they won’t, because they don’t want to actually sacrifice anything to help reach whatever goals they are hoping to attain.

  107. rcali says:
    July 20, 2018 at 11:17 am
    Anybody remember when Mike Tomlin chastised Bronze Star Army vet Alejandro Villanueva for wanting to respect the National Anthem? That’s how bad it is folks, the disdain for our country is not just with the players but the coaches as well. I see another big loss of proud Americans for the protest league.

    ——————————————-

    As far as that goes, I feel like it was more of SJW trolls on the internet than Tomlin. That usually happens when a big-name person sides with conservatives on almost anything. Has been for the last 3+ years. Side against the left and you’re falsely accused of being a vile scumbag who’s against minorities and women.

    Other than that, you’re right that the disdain Americans have for their own country has grown. And it’s sad. If another 9/11 or Pearl Harbor took place in this atmosphere, the Anthem protesters and their supporters would refuse to support the country in those scenarios. They would probably find reasons to blame the U.S. for such an event and those that did it would resume the anti-war protests from a decade ago.

    Plus, I’m not really as pumped up for the season as I normally would be. And the SJW vs logic battles regarding the Anthem protests are a significant factor. There’s a part of me that’s contemplating having an NFL sabbatical this year, although I would still do fantasy football. However, I haven’t been doing too many fantasy mock drafts compared to previous yrs.

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