NFL Lockout Over
Redskin DE Lorenzo Alexander discusses the end to the NFL lockout.
In the famous words of Hank Williams Jr., are you ready for some football?
Today, National Football League officials announced a deal to end the 136-day lockout. Player reps unanimously voted, 32-0 to ratify terms to a new 10-year collective bargaining agreement.
"We wanted to let everyone know that loves this game that the Board of Payer Representatives and the Executive Committee of the National Football League Player's Association unanimously recommended the approval of a deal," said NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith in a released statement.
According to the NFL Network, the league and players have agreed to new terms of a collective bargaining agreement that could have players in the locker rooms as early as tomorrow.
Starting tomorrow, players can return to their team's facility for volunteer workouts since being banned from entering over four months ago.
A key sticking-point for the deal was that the players could use their team's facility to hold meetings in order to recertify as a union. Up until now, the owners had denied that request.
Players will now be allowed to use the facilities to tentatively discuss topics they were previously not allowed to discuss.
Once a union again, player reps can vote on topics like player discipline fines, league drug programs and workers comp.
Below is a list of some of the new terms in the deal:
- New CBA is a 10-year deal with NO "opt out clause" - this means that owner's or players cannot opt out of deal resulting in a confirmed full decade of uninterrupted football.
- $9 Billion Dollars - This is the amount of money the NFL brings in every year that the owners & players use to split close to 50/50. Under the new terms owners will now receive 53% and the players 47%.
- Lower Rookie Salaries - A salary system will be implemented to limit spending on first-round draft picks so that a rookie who has never played a down of football will not receive tens of millions of dollars in guaranteed money.
- Limited Padded Practices & No More "2-a-Days" - states that the dreaded 2-a-day practices are now a thing of the past and there could be as little as just 14 total padded practices during the entire season.
Here is a timeline for the next week, according to the NFL Network.
- List of Free Agents released today - At 6pm today a list of all Free Agents will be released to teams but actual free agent signings cannot take place until Friday at 6pm.
- Tuesday - Players allowed to enter team facilities for volunteer workouts. 10am teams will be allowed to sign drafted rookies and undrafted free agents, trade players and negotiate with available free agents but not sign them.
- Wednesday - Training camps begin for 10 teams, with 10 more teams on Thursday, 10 more on Friday and final 2 teams to begin training camp on Sunday. No pads or physical contact are allowed until Sunday. NFL Network reports the Redskins will be begin training camp on Thursday.
- Thursday - Waiver wire starts up, teams can now cut or waive players. This will be a day to watch for the Skins to see whether or not they cut big names like Donovan McNabb and troubled Defensive End Albert Haynesworth.
- Friday - The free agency frenzy will begin at 6pm and teams will be allowed to sign free agents to bolster their roster. Big names on the list include highly coveted shut-down cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha and just released from prison Wide Receiver, Plaxico Burress.
There is still more work to be done to hash out recertification and the Brady vs. The NFL lawsuit needs to be dropped, but NFL commissioner Roger Goodell summed it up best:
"It's been a long time coming and football is back, that's great news for everybody."