Pro Bowlers comment on 17-game season, which is beginning to feel inevitable

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In many respects, the 17-game season is like Thursday Night Football. Plenty of individual players will object to it, but the NFL Players Association inevitably will agree to it. Because the money will be too good.

ESPN.com posted on Saturday afternoon a collection of quotes from individual players regarding the 17-game season, with input ranging from “not interested” to “interested if we get more money and more time off.” The article opens with quotes from Jaguars defensive lineman Calais Campbell, who is opposed to 17 games — and who believes that plenty of other players are, too.

“When I talk to the guys, I don’t think many people want to do it,” Campbell said. “Really, you talk to guys and I don’t think anybody wants to do it. It’s going to be very, very tough. I know the ownership’s really hard on it. We’re definitely talking, trying to figure out what we need to do, how we can make this thing work.”

The thinking is that, eventually, they’ll find a way to make it work. The ongoing labor negotiations are unfolding under the league’s proposal for a 17-game season. As one source with knowledge of the dynamics told PFT earlier this month, if the 16-game formula were still in play, a new deal already would be done.

So the question, at this point, doesn’t seem to be whether a 17-game season is coming, but what the owners will offer for it, in terms of more money and more down time. And it can’t simply be a 6.25-percent pay hike to reflect the increase in games from 16 to 17. There needs to be a significant bump in pay, and it needs to be something more than a general increase to the salary cap, since that could end up disproportionately benefiting star players. The minimum salaries must increase, and the minimum spending requirements must go up, forcing owners to spend closer and closer to the cap.

Both sides regard the start of the new league year in March as a deadline for getting a deal done. Once the economics are resolved based on 17 games, the rest of the deal should quickly come together.

40 responses to “Pro Bowlers comment on 17-game season, which is beginning to feel inevitable

  1. expand the roster size so not every player has to play so often…seems like a simple fix to me….just saying…

  2. I’ve always felt that they should expand the NFL rosters regular and gameday rosters. It would allow teams to develop their talent, it would reduce pressure on injured players to play when they ought not to, and it would at least ease the possibility of longer seasons. It would also extend careers.

  3. I don’tcare how many games are played. What I do care about is being ripped off for 2 unwatchable preseason games as part of my season ticket “package.” Bold-faced THIEVERY.

  4. They also probably did not want to go from 14 to 16 games either, but the playoff teams all play at least 17 games and get playoff money, not much compared to season salaries, but when the money gets waved in front of their faces they’ll play. Just like the Thursday games, many say they don’t like them but read the Athletic article with Jason Kelce and he states he actually likes them as you get that extra 3 day bump off and the practices leading up to the game are non contact. Yawn, no matter what players say they want or don’t want is not reality.

  5. iowalion72 says:
    January 25, 2020 at 5:39 pm
    I’ve always felt that they should expand the NFL rosters regular and gameday rosters. It would allow teams to develop their talent, it would reduce pressure on injured players to play when they ought not to, and it would at least ease the possibility of longer seasons. It would also extend careers.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    I also feel they should expand the rosters (and eliminate the active/inactive distinction on game day) but it would not do any of those things you listed.

  6. This is not that hard.

    The biggest hurdle is the ideal length of season, including considering when to start & stop. I think football has enough of my January as work ramps back up, so I like where it ends. However, I really like the idea of late August games being relevant, before the change of the season & school starting.

    Eliminating preseason games & adding regular season is an easy fix.

    However, it seems like every team having 2 Bye’s is probably in order if they are adding games. The bye rotation should be formulaic, like the schedule with each team having a 5/6/7 Bye & a 12/13/14 Bye.

  7. I’m calling complete BS on the players on this. OH, just like how they all hate Thursday night games, but they voted for it? That’s like me complaining about having to work overtime, then volunteering for OT because of the money.

  8. sityourselfdown says:
    January 25, 2020 at 5:41 pm
    If they do this then kiss goodbye single season records, and eventually, all passing/rushing records.

    It’s happened before. We’ve gone from a 12 game season to a 14 game season to a 16 game season over the course of the last few decades so records already should be looked at in this light. One of the reasons OJ’s 2000 yard season is so remarkable is that it happened in a 14 game season and that doesn’t lose it’s shine because someone else does 2k or more in a 16 or 17 game season. If anything it makes his accomplishment all the more amazing. Besides, as the saying goes records are made to be broken. All this being said, if I’m the NFLPA I’m insisting on the expansion of season and game day rosters in exchange for the expanded season.

  9. redballsucks says:
    January 25, 2020 at 5:39 pm
    expand the roster size so not every player has to play so often…seems like a simple fix to me….just saying…
    ////////////////
    Every player doesn’t have to play so often now. But for some reason, the coaches seem to think they should play their best players as much as possible. And for some reason, the players think they should play and garner bigger stats to get a bigger contract. But sure, let’s try it your way and see if that works….

  10. radiologyken says:
    January 25, 2020 at 6:02 pm
    But player safety is the utmost importance…
    /////////
    Not sure what your point is. Maybe they should eliminate the NFL? They already play 20 games, plus the playoffs. That isn’t going to change.

  11. corkeyforpresident says:
    January 25, 2020 at 5:42 pm
    I don’tcare how many games are played. What I do care about is being ripped off for 2 unwatchable preseason games as part of my season ticket “package.” Bold-faced THIEVERY.
    //////
    While I do agree that being a season ticket holder (when I was) was annoying in the preseason, your comment is incorrect. Just don’t buy season tickets. It’s your choice. It’s that simple. How can you be robbed if you know what is coming?

  12. sityourselfdown says:
    January 25, 2020 at 5:41 pm
    If they do this then kiss goodbye single season records, and eventually, all passing/rushing records.
    ////////
    So??????

  13. What do the fans gain with one more game? This year wouldn’t have done much as far deciding the playoffs which is the point of the regular season. The Titans had separated themselves to grab that last playoff spot in the AFC and the NFC East teams would have just been given another chance to blow the division. It would have just been another week of seed shuffling and injuries to good players.

    What they are proposing will have a lot of consequences they should be thinking of. Less practice will make the games at the start even worse. The play the first four weeks is like the preseason now, expect that to be 5 games now. So we as fans get another game of mediocre play, GREAT! Careers could be shorten so with the compensations you have to wonder if it is worth taking 2 or 3 years off your career?

    Another game that would decide very little and lessen the best part of the season could end up losing more money then its worth. Casual fans will pay less attention early and hurt your best product, the playoffs. I would be for a 3rd Wild Card over adding to the season.

  14. Once again, the NFL owners, who are global elitists and who are more money hungry and power driven than ever (because they have no competition), seek to roll over the players once again. In negotiations, you have Robert Kraft and others of his ilk with their Wall Street lawyer types, at the table talking with some Player Rep, wearing dreadlocks, with gold teeth and who signs his contract with an ‘X’, trying to sort out sophisticated details. No wonder the players get bent over every few years. Soon it’ll be a 24 game season, and they’ll have football every night of the week, and the Jaguars will relocate to Beijing. And a coca cola at a game with cost $39, and mind controlled Millenials will pay for it.

  15. Add another bye week and you’ll get another week of televised regular season games. TV revenue drives the league.

  16. The nice extra paycheck will make the players go right along. Make the 17th game a neutral site game for everyone and many problems are solved. My guess is teams are resisting giving up the home game for London and Mexico City now that the Chargers, Rams, and Raiders are moving into their new joints. I would pay to see the NFL try to force the Eagles, Packers, Steelers, Patriots, Giants, Cowboys, or Broncos give up a home game.

  17. sityourselfdown says:
    If they do this then kiss goodbye single season records, and eventually, all passing/rushing records.
    ===

    But you count records achieved in a 16-game season? You could have made the same argument when they moved from a 12-game season to 14, and from 14 to 16.

  18. It’s about money, but that works both ways. Make a 17 game season, expand the rosters, create more jobs, and cap the games played by any player at 16. NFL gets to extort the networks for another week of “content”, and the union gets more positions and doesn’t sacrifice player safety.

  19. cowboy fan- you don’t think the NFLPA has lawyers? your comment comes across as very racist, perhaps you did not intend it that way? I sure hope not

  20. Adding two more playoff teams per conference and eliminating playoff bye weeks would be much easier to get passed and make even more money so if the NFL is all about money why aren’t they considering this?

  21. tim Anderson says:
    January 25, 2020 at 8:49 pm
    If it aint broke dont fix it
    —————————
    The NFL has been broken for the last decade. Thanks Kraft and Goodell

  22. Each team should play a 15 game on a 17 week schedule giving them 2 bye weeks during the season. 8 home games and 7 away. This would help with players health specially seeing that a lot of the guys are getting hurt toward the end of the season. With that being said, Add two more teams to the playoffs. The two #1 seeds would be the only ones to get the first week off.

  23. Hey… all your Geniuses who keep bloviating about how the owners in the NFL just want “more money”…

    What did you think the NFL was, a charity?
    It exists at owner expense to entertain you?
    It’s somehow independently/magically funded?
    It’s a 401c or a 501c?

    I mean REALLY. Can we STOP with this drivel? Make your argument on the basis of whether or not it’s good for the game or not, but this idiotic blathering about “the NFL owners are just selfish billionaires” is beyond stupid.

    NO KIDDING. They own teams to MAKE MONEY. They want MORE Money. EVERY…BUSINESS..DOES.. PERIOD!!!!

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