Before we get into the lengthy debate between Ravens quarterback Robert Griffin III and Redskins long snapper Nick Sundberg regarding the newly proposed NFL CBA, let's get all the facts straight.
First the what. The new CBA, expected to begin in 2021, calls for a 17-game regular season, a higher percentage of the league's revenue going to the players, a shortened preseason, upgraded pensions for retired players and more roster spots, among other amendments.
The players' share of the revenue would increase to 48% and could grow to 48.5%, resulting in approximately $5 billion more money per year going to the players instead of the owners.
Some players want more, some aren't interested in continuing negotiations and risking a lockout. When the NFLPA voted to send the proposed CBA to the full player membership, it sparked plenty of debate online between players. Especially between two former teammates in Griffin and Sundberg.
Simply put. The positives vastly outweigh the negatives. I wasn’t willing to risk a work stoppage over a little less time during OTA’s. We got a ton of the things we targeted last March at rep meetings. Former player pensions/medical facilities, current player benefits skyrocket. https://t.co/cpFjHmzkg5— Nick Sundberg (@NickSundberg) February 26, 2020
Griffin was on the side of holding out for more money coming to the players. That the players and owners split the revenue down the middle.
Sundberg, on the other hand, would rather get a small victory now than risk a catastrophic situation for the players.
Hold out til when? Do you honestly thing an extra % is worth ripping the deal up? The owners told us if we didn’t get a deal done before now, they wouldn’t negotiate again until February, when we would have to start from scratch. It took us 10 months of negotiating to get here... https://t.co/PcV5HAWerQ— Nick Sundberg (@NickSundberg) February 26, 2020
Griffin then went on to argue how players shouldn't negotiate with a mindset of fearing the worst.
"You can’t negotiate a CBA from a position of fear," Griffin wrote. "That’s our union's job to ensure that we are properly [equipped] to endure a work stoppage. Your position is, 'Well it’s the best offer we got so we should accept it.' This is a time to flip the script and get more of what we work for."
"That’s a super easy thing to say. 'Just get more.' But at what cost?" Sundberg replied. "Two years of a strike? We’d lose over 13 billion in player money in that time. Say we get to 50/50 after that. It’ll take 20+ years to recoup those lost funds. And guys careers will end because of that action."
You’ve got 6 XFL teams and probably 6000 collage kids coming out this year and next to fill rosters while we picket. You gonna be on the front lines at the stadium and facility every day fighting this? https://t.co/gvLiRKaRMe— Nick Sundberg (@NickSundberg) February 26, 2020
The new CBA is a complicated issue in the league. Players believe they deserve more money, but owners have a lot of power in negotiations. Sundberg and Griffin both have valid points, and they discussed the issue in far more tweets than what's shown here.
Players will have to consider both sides and all the consequences that could come with holding out for what they deserve. There isn't a set date for the player membership vote, though the NFLPA passing the deal is a decent barometer for what conclusion the players will come to.
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