Update: NFL Lockout is over! Season will begin on time

DeMaurice Smith and Roger Goodell among those talking about the NFL Lockout.


Read original post below

The NFL Lockout is over, and the season can begin on time. The NFL Players’ Association recommended approval of the new collective bargaining agreement with NFL owners Monday after months of negotiations. Starting today, teams will be able to sign free agents and tomorrow they will begin signing their draft picks. Training camps will be opening on a staggered schedule over the course of the week. The cancelled August 7 Hall of Fame Game has been the only casualty of the lockout; the preseason is set to begin Aug. 11.

The new 10-year agreement divides the NFL’s annual revenue on a 53-47 split between owners and players, respectively. There will be a salary cap of $120 million. The season will not be extended to 18 games, as had been proposed before the lockout and opposed by many players. There will also be fewer off-season team activities.

Information from the Orlando Sentinel.

Original Post (July 12)

The NFL and NFL Players’ Association are close to an agreement that will allow the season to begin on time, according to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter. Anonymous sources close to the negotiations tell ESPN that the two sides may be able to ratify an agreement by July 21, when the NFL owners will gather in Atlanta for a league meeting. If an agreement is not reached by then, spring training will be postponed and the first preseason game on August 7 may be cancelled, according to the Associated Press.

The NFL Lockout began March 11 after negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement failed, and several NFL players (including Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Vincent Jackson, and Peyton Manning) sued the league. On July 8, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals confirmed that the lockout was legitimate.

The NFL, the sports league with the highest earnings in the world, makes about $9 billion per year. Under the previous agreement that expired in March, players took 57% of that figure, while NFL owners took the rest. Of the owners’ share, $1 billion was reserved for such things as stadium improvements and “growth and development of the league”. Now, the owners are arguing that “the economic realities of the era” have made this unsustainable.

The owners wanted a 51% cut of revenues and $2.4 billion for “growth and development”, while players wanted a 50/50 share. Now, negotiations are entering their final phase. One NFL owner told ESPN “There is no reason to believe it won’t get done.”

As of press time, it appeared the players had agreed to the 51-49 split. The last hurdle in negotiations, according to ESPN,  is what should be done about rookie players. Under a current proposal by the owners, the top draft picks would get a four-year deal with a team plus an optional fifth year. The players agree in principle, but are not fond of the owners’ insistence on a fixed salary for that fifth year set at $4 million. Players would prefer a flexible, negotiable fifth-year salary.

The agreement between players and owners would be effective for a minimum of seven years, and could be extended to 10.

Sources: ESPN, The Bleacher Report, and the Associated Press.

Oh, and one more personal thing. Good luck to Sean, Kaelynn, and Hollie Gillson as they move to Lynnwood, Washington in pursuit of new opportunities!