Now I know that the 2010 NFL season just ended and we shouldn’t be worried about football until the draft in April. The NBA and NHL are in full swing. March Madness is just around the corner. Spring training has started for MLB. Honestly, I don’t give a rats. We might not have an 2011 NFL season unless a new collective bargaining agreement is reached between the owners and NFLPA (National Football League Player’s Association).
The National Football League is by far the most popular of American sports without question. It is a cash cow which brings in billions of dollars yearly. This labor dispute could possibly bring a hault to the real American past time, the NFL. The very thought of not having football in 2011 makes me and millions of others in this country physically ill. Why wouldn’t they play next year you ask? Money, what else.
What gets lost when we’re all getting drunk with our buddies on Sunday afternoons is that all of our favorite teams are owned by a bunch of filthy rich, money hungry, uptight businessmen. They’re not fans. They don’t really care if their teams win or lose. For them it’s all about the bottom line, money. That’s all fine and well to a certain degree. Of course if you own a business, be it big or small, you always want a positive return on your investment. I get it. The thing about the NFL owners are that they’re greedy. There isn’t one NFL owner out there that isn’t making millions off of their fans and their franchise. Prices are increased annually throughout every stadium along with tickets, merchandise, and concessions. Now these owners are threatening to “Lock Out” the players, coaches and fans in 2011 if they don’t get even more money. It’s a joke.
While the owners and NFLPA were scheduled to meet, talks stalled and there is now a deadline of March 4th until the current collective bargaining agreement, (CBA), expires. The main sticking point right now is that players want a bigger cut of the revenue that the NFL brings in. I don’t blame them. They want money for retirement benefits and healthcare so they can still have some type of income when their careers are finished. Even though we see the Peyton Mannings and Tom Bradys of the NFL making millions upon millions of dollars per year, the average NFL player doesn’t come close to that. It’s such a physical game that careers are ended in the blink of an eye. Players salaries are not guaranteed so when they are released from there contracts the money stops, unlike the NBA and MLB.
There is a $9 billion revenue pie which is supposed to be split between the owners and the NFLPA. Currently, the owners take $1 billion off of the top for operating costs and split the total revenue, ($8 billion),40/60 with the players getting the 60%. Seems fair enough to me seeing that there are only 32 owners and thousands of current and former players. While the players are ready to settle for a 50/50 split of the $9 billion, the owners want to take an additional $1 billion, (dropping it down to $7 billion), then splitting it up. When this was proposed by the NFLPA, the stubborn owners basically spat at the idea and walked out of the talks leaving us all in limbo.
Now of course every side wants to get their money but none of us care. As a fan, I want to drink my beer and yell at the TV for three hours on Sunday while watching my team either win or lose. I don’t care which right now because I just want to see something. What are we going to gamble on now,bowling? Hopefully everything will get resolved and it will be business as usual. Until then though, these two sides had better get this figured out in time for training camp because without any football… WE RIOT!!!