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CBA would hand most discipline decisions to neutral decision maker

NFL players who think Commissioner Roger Goodell has too much disciplinary power may be pleased by one portion of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement that owners have approved and players will soon vote on.

The union informed players today that part of the offer on the table is to take final say on most disciplinary issues away from the commissioner and in the hands of a neutral decision maker.

That could mean that, for instance, if a player commits a violation of the league’s personal-conduct policy, final say on his discipline would come not from Goodell but from an arbitrator that both the NFL and the NFLPA agreed upon in advance.

That’s a concession many players have sought, and one that some owners may be glad to give up, given how often Goodell’s decision-making on player discipline has subjected the league to criticism and backlash.