The League

Doug Farrar

Doug Farrar

A staff writer

Let Him Earn His Money


At this point, I would rather have Goodell earning his salary, and looking at the big picture, than trying some sort of stimulus gesture that would be the equivalent of a Band-Aid on an amputation. The Commissioner could do that by finding a way to broker a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, thus avoiding two things: An uncapped year in 2010, and the inability of revenue sharing to provide a reasonably even financial playing field for all teams.

While an uncapped year wouldn't be quite the free-for-all some have anticipated due to certain restrictions that would be in place, it would drastically change the landscape for the players. Free agency qualifications would go from four to six years, meaning that most players would never see the second contract that is truly the most valuable one. In addition, smaller-market teams like the Bills and Jaguars would have less of a tie to the NFL, leaving more of the Wild West mentality that exists in Major League Baseball, where a team like the Pittsburgh Pirates can underspend incompetently for decades unchecked.

The end of collective bargaining also opens the door for collusion. The NFLPA has already filed one claim against the owners. In February, 2008, the Players' Association claimed that a debt-reduction agreement among the owners was in fact a way to circumvent the agreement in the current CBA to pay the players a certain amount of revenue as dictated by the CBA. There is a fear that as the uncapped year looms, owners could put the clamp down and engender enough bad feelings to cause player and union unrest, leading to an eventual work stoppage.

Basically, the point is not for Goodell to reduce his salary in a show of solidarity to the nation as it attempts to recover from the current financial crisis. The point is for Goodell to have the foresight to avoid the kind of mismanagement that allowed this crisis to happen in the first place.

By Doug Farrar  |  February 16, 2009; 11:16 AM ET  | Category:  Doug Farrar , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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