The labor extension agreed upon by the NFL and the NFLPA will come to an end tomorrow night and if an agreement is not reached by around midday Friday, chaos will begin to ensue.
NFLPA executive director Demaurice Smith took to Twitter this evening with a message for the players.
“Players stay strong! Stay informed, update by 2pm tomorrow.”
What does it all mean?
Well in short, if an agreement is no reached by tomorrow afternoon then both parties will have some big decisions to make. If the sides reach a stalemate, they will likely break off talks to plan their next move. The NFL will make the final decision on whether or not they are going to try to lock the players out while the union will decide whether or not to decertify. The union must decertify before the end of the labor agreement so that is why Smith is promising to give an update to the players by 2 PM (EST). Without a deal, the union will fire an antitrust lawsuit against the league and a whole mess of boring legal stuff that nobody wants to know about will ensue.
There is, however, a silver lining to decertification of the union. Check out Peter King’s latest article at SI.com but basically there is a scenario where the league rules from last year could be suddenly instituted by order of the court. That would mean the new league year would start and football would continue while this issue is sorted out in the courts.
Aside from the jubilation we would all feel over the news that we would have football in 2011, we would also suddenly have the start of free agency. Once the new league year starts, teams can begin trading players and all free agents are up for grabs. Peter King also points out that this all could happen just before the NFL Draft in April.
Can you imagine free agency starting just days before the draft? It would be absolute pandemonium. There would also be no salary cap because the rules would likely be the same the league used in 2010. That means Al Davis and Dan Snyder can overpay as much as they want, however they could place themselves in a bind because when a deal is reached, there will likely be a salary cap. I’d expect a lot of ridiculous 1-year deals if King’s theory ends up coming to fruition.
Head over to SI.com to read King’s entire article because he explains it much better than I ever could.
What do you think Addicts? How might the Chiefs and Scott Pioli react if there is suddenly free agency just before the draft?