Mike Silver of Yahoo Sports provides a nice breakdown of the events leading up to NFLPA head DeMaurice Smith announcing the union would decertify on Friday. Silver says the players’ union felt disrespected during the entire process, and even though the owners’ last-minute offer was significantly better, the players decided to take the dispute to court to get the financial transparency they’ve been seeking.
“It’s tempting for frustrated NFL fans to tune all of it out and boil down the clash to its core issue. Obviously, this is a fight over money, and the inability of the owners and the NFLPA to agree on how to divvy up the $9 billion annual economic pie is the main reason they’re in this mess.
“Yet from the players’ perspective, control is very much at the heart of this fight, and it has been since the owners unanimously voted to opt out of the CBA in 2008, a mere two years after they’d agreed to an extension.
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“From that point on, owners embarked upon a not-so-subtle strategy to “take back our league,” as enunciated by the Carolina Panthers’ Jerry Richardson to his peers last March. They were fully prepared to lock out the players until a decision by U.S. District Court Judge David Doty imperiled the uninterrupted television payments on which they’d been counting derailed their plans.”
Jim Trotter of Sports Illustrated says the bottom line is there is a lack of trust between owners and players, and that the players are unwilling to give back $650 million per year to the owners without a verified reason for doing so.
Sports law attorney Michael McCann offers a road map of how the dispute between ownership and the players could play out in court for Sports Illustrated.
Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports expects only a minor delay in free agency, with it starting in the next two to four weeks.
Dan Pompei of the National Football Post adds his name to the list of people around the league that believe quarterback Kevin Kolb landing in Seattle is a possibility.
Pete Prisco of CBS Sports debates how much it will cost in terms of compensation for a team to get Kolb from Philadelphia.
The Seahawks were on hand to check out Division II prospect cornerback Prathon Wilkerson the Albany State product’s pro day on Friday.
Mike Mayock of the NFL Network offers his top 32 players in this year’s draft.