It’s no secret that, generally speaking, NFL players are unhappy with the way the current Collective Bargaining Agreement is negotiated. The last CBA was negotiated in 2011 following a three-month lockout. The deal was for 10 years, and was widely regarded to as the worst CBA in sports.
Contracts were still not guaranteed, rookie pay scale was dramatically decreased, and despite a new TV kicking in increasing league revenue, the salary cap remained relatively unchanged. This meant players were still limited in what they could make.
In 2016, an arbitrator ruled that NFL owners knowingly withheld more than $100 million from players, ordering owners to return the money to a shared revenue pool.
The relationship between the owners and the NFL Players Association has taken a notable hit in terms of disciplinary action taken against the players. There still fails to be a consistent means of fair discipline levied upon the players. Many believe commissioner Roger Goodell, who serves as the final decision maker in punishment, acts in too much of an authoritarian style, with little say from outside entities.
The current CBA is set to expire in 2021. Following the 2020 season, the two sides have been busy trying to negotiate a new deal this offseason, and there have been varying reports on exactly how the talks are going. Back in May, Smith sent an email to agents around the league telling them to make sure their clients are financially prepared for a lockout or strike of at least one year. Now, the NFLPA appears to be going a step further as they issues a work stoppage guide to all players.
The guide provides players with suggestions in the event there is a work stoppage that causes missing checks.
Below are some of the highlights the guide from the guide, which advises players to save some extra money:
- Save at least half of each paycheck, if not more. If your current expenses are too high to save this much, you should look at ways to change your spending habits and reduce financial commitments.
- If you’re in the market for a new home, consider renting instead of buying for now.
- Consider selling a car you have not driven in the past six months.
- Learn to say “no” — or at least, “not now” — to friends and family asking for money.
- Consider selling clothes you have not worn in a year on Poshmark, Thredup or Tradesy
The guide continues to explain some of the other ramifications of a work stoppage. The players will have absolutely no access to team facilities, and they also caution that they do not know if the league can or will drug test them during a potential lockout.
Both the NFL and the NFLPA have expressed interest in locking in a new deal for the CBA before the start of this season, but so far, no progress has been made.