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Under new CBA, rookies won’t have much of a reason to hold out


With the good news (that said, we’re not yet prepared to make like the Sweathogs, like Schefty did) that the NFLPA* Executive Committee will meet Monday to recommend ratification of the deal previously adopted by the league, it’s time to keep looking at some of the new realities to which the two sides had agreed before the NFL agreed with itself that a deal was done, even though it wasn’t.

In past years, the process of negotiating contracts for draft picks was a tricky one, with plenty of guys holding out for better terms and skipping part of training camp and in some cases missing all of training camp and the preseason. Occasionally, a guy like 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree (pictured) would hold out into the regular season.

With a new rookie wage scale, there are no real reasons to hold out. Under the summary of the agreed terms (and open items) reviewed by the NFLPA* Executive Committee and board of player representatives on Wednesday (as obtained by Howard Balzer of the Sports Xchange and, the length of the contracts (four years plus an option in the first round, four years in all later rounds, three years for undrafted players) now mandatory and with the compensation largely fixed, there isn’t much to negotiate.

One exception comes from the amount of guaranteed money in the contract. There’s no limit in this regard. The only exception is that guarantees can’t skip years.

So when the doors open and the flood of signings commences, there shouldn’t be any lengthy holdouts. Heck, there shouldn’t be any holdouts at all.