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Dan Rooney has strong words on 18-game season, labor negotiations

Max Starks, Trai Essex, Dan Rooney

Pittsburgh Steelers offensive linemen Max Starks, right and Trai Essex, left, walk with Dan Rooney, chairman emeritus of the Steelers and the U.S. ambassador to Ireland, during the practice session at the NFL football team’s training camp in Latrobe, Pa., Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2010. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)


Steelers chairman and ambassador to Ireland Dan Rooney arrived in Pittsburgh Friday in advance of Sunday’s AFC Championship.

Based on his comments to Judy Battista of the New York Times, some NFL owners probably wish Rooney stayed overseas a few more days.

Rooney remains opposed to the 18-game season: “I would rather not have the money,” he said.

He’s also frustrated with the pace of labor negotiations.

“The negotiators should get it together,” Rooney said.

The Rooney family has been such an important part of labor negotiations throughout NFL’s history. Dan Rooney says he won’t get involved this time around, which is a shame. Hopefully, the men that will be at the table will listen to Rooney’s words.

“I work for Hillary,” Rooney told Battista. “She manages things that are a lot tougher than this.”