NFL owners approve CBA, give players until Tuesday


NFL owners approve CBA, give players until Tuesday

CSNBayArea.com staff
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced Thursday that the owners had ratified the proposed Collective Bargaining Agreement with the NFL Players Association, moving the lockout one step closer to being over.

The agreement is 10 years in duration but still requires approval from the NFLPA. Early indications were that the players were not receptive to the CBA document penned by the owners.

A Thursday night conference call with the players did not result in a vote.

The owners reportedly have agreed to give the players until Tuesday to conduct a vote.

According to a reporter for the Sports Business Journal, "there are numerous items in the proposal that players never agreed to."

RELATED: Details of the Collective Bargaining Agreement

Nevertheless, there was optimism from the league.

"We're getting close to getting football back and that's what we want," Goodell said at a press conference in Atlanta.

Owners voted 31-0 to approve the settlement, with the Raiders abstaining. Raiders CEO Amy Trask, in exclusive correspondence with Comcast SportsNet Insider Paul Gutierrez explained the abstention thusly:

"We have profound philosophical differences on a number of issues -- both of a football and economic nature," Trask said in an email. "We have consistently expressed our views on these matters to the league."

Goodell said that the August 7 Hall of Fame Game, featuring Chicago and St. Louis, will have to be cancelled. He said the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies would still take place as scheduled.

"The time was just too tight," the commissioner said. "Unfortunately, we're not going to be able to play the game this year."

Goodell said team training facilities would open Saturday and the new league year -- which includes free agency and training camps -- would officially begin on Wednesday.

"We anxious to get back to football and hopefully today's development and the developments of the NFLPA over the next few days will ensure that," Goodell said.

Of course, all of it is contingent on approval by the players. That vote could take place Thursday evening.

"There's an urgency to this. We want to have a full 2011 season and that includes four preseason games," Goodell said.

The four-month lockout is the NFL's first work stoppage since 1987.

49ers wide receiver Pierre Garçon handed hefty fine


49ers wide receiver Pierre Garçon handed hefty fine

The NFL fined 49ers wide receiver Pierre Garçon $24,309 for unnecessary roughness in last week’s game against Washington.

Garçon, who was not penalized on the play, lowered his helmet and struck Washington safety Montae Nicholson at the end of an 8-yard pass reception in the second quarter.

In 2013, the NFL passed a rule that bans the ball carrier from initiating contact with the crown of his helmet in the open field.

Nicholson’s helmet flew off and he remained on the ground for a couple of minutes. He was evaluated for a possible concussion and shoulder injury. However, Nicholson was cleared and he returned to action.

After the play, Garçon and Washington safety D.J. Swearinger exchanged words, and Swearinger took a swipe at Garçon’s facemask. Swearinger was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct.

The NFL fined Swearinger $9,115 for unnecessary roughness.

Ronnie Lott: Chance to show Dwight Clark how much we care


Ronnie Lott: Chance to show Dwight Clark how much we care

SANTA CLARA – In less than a year since a group of former 49ers players came together to form the Golden Heart Fund, the non-profit organization has provided valuable assistance.

“We’ve made some progress with the idea of knowing there are some people in need, so we’ve been able to make some grants to some of the ex-Niners,” Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott told NBC Sports Bay Area.

“We’ve been able to respond. This is more about us being able to give guys the ability to know they can have, as (former 49ers linebacker and Golden Heart Fund board member) Ron Ferrari says, a hand up not a hand out.”

The organization is in the midst of a fund-raising drive this week in conjunction with "Dwight Clark Day" on Sunday. The 49ers face the Dallas Cowboys at Levi’s Stadium, and Clark will be the guest of honor. More than 35 players from the 49ers' first Super Bowl championship team are expected to be in attendance.

Clark played nine seasons for the 49ers and provided the most memorable play in franchise history with “The Catch” against Dallas in the 1981 NFC Championship game, which propelled the organization to its first Super Bowl. Clark served as a front-office executive for a decade after his playing days.

In March, Clark announced he was diagnosed with ALS. He is scheduled to attend Sunday’s game and make some remarks at halftime from a suite.

“It’s unbelievable we are having an opportunity to celebrate an incredible day for this gentleman,” Lott said. “We can all say there was a moment in time in which we stood on his shoulders after making that catch. Now, we get a chance to lift him up a little bit and let him know how much we all care.”

Lott said Clark has been a champion of the Golden Heart Fund from its inception. Past and current 49ers ownership has supported the organization, which provides financial support for former 49ers players in times of physical, emotional and financial need.

“It’s the spirit of Dwight,” Lott said. “It’s more about the funds going in through his efforts. He’s paying it forward.”

--The public can made a direct contribution to the fund at GoldenHeartFund.org.

--Proceeds from the 50/50 raffle at Sunday’s game will benefit the Golden Heart Fund.

--Twenty-five percent of proceeds from the sales of Dwight Clark apparel purchased on game day will go to the fund.

--Half of all proceeds from admission to the 49ers Museum at Levi’s Stadium throughout the year will go to the charity.

-- On Sunday, Nov. 19, Levi’s Stadium and race grand marshal Roger Craig will host the first Golden Heart 4.9K Run with all proceeds from the event going to the Golden Heart Fund. Runners can register GoldenHeartRun.com.