NFL, NFLPA Not Making Progress On CBA's Financial Issues
The NFL and NFLPA "don't seem to have made much progress on the major financial issues" in their CBA negotiations, according to ESPN's Dan Graziano. He said under the previous CBA, the players' shared revenue was "established at no lower than 47% at any given year," but they would "like that number to come up." Graziano said so far, the owners "have not indicated a willingness to move off of that number," and from the owners’ side, "they’re interested in discussing the potential expansion of the season." He noted multiple ideas "have been floated," including a 17-game season, 18-game season or expanding the playoffs "instead of expanding the regular season." Graziano: "That last one is one that players might support, but (there are) no concrete proposals there yet. They’re still dancing around each other and figuring out what the major priorities are and they haven't really got to the nitty gritty of negotiation.” Graziano said there is a "real disconnect on the expanded season." He added, "Players didn't want it in the first place and now, two, three days after the retirement of Andrew Luck, one of the game's brighter stars, at the age of 29 because he felt like a 16-game season was too much, if there was any chance that the players were going to support an idea like this, it definitely dampens that significantly" ("Get Up," ESPN, 8/27).
PRESEASON COMPLAINTS: The Dallas Morning News' Tim Cowlishaw said the NFL's preseason is a "terrible product," and they have "got to get away from it." He said, "I don't know if they can talk the players into 18 games, but they've got to reduce the preseason." The Athletic's Frank Isola said preseason football is about "money, that's why they play" ("Around The Horn," ESPN2, 8/26). ESPN's Scott Van Pelt said the "annual preseason complaint from the media is played out," but it is "worth saying this August is the worst it's ever been." Van Pelt: "It makes no sense to require your fans to pay full season prices for a pair of home games that line the pockets of the owners. The league used to hate it when you called it the exhibition season and maybe they still do, but this whole thing ... is a completely preposterous exhibition" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 8/27).