And boom goes the dynamite.
On Friday, The NFL and the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) extended its original extension to further discuss the ongoing labor disagreement in an attempt to stop a work stoppage. The current extension will last until this Friday, March 11, and I’m guessing another extension will be agreed upon at that point. It will keep happening until this squabble between millionaires and billionaires finally hits common ground. You know why?
Yes, that mid-90s song was right: It really is all about the Benjamins. The owners and the league commissioner, Roger Goodell, want a bigger stake while the players just want to play. And the fans? Well, they just want this grade school slapfight to end so they can have something to do on Sundays. Seems reasonable enough, but that’s not how business works — and the NFL is a business which trumps every other professional sport six feet under.
But what really, REALLY irks me is the NFL’s blatant hypocrisy towards its own players and its own league.
Most of us who have been following this sloppy feud know why it’s going on to begin with: Owners want a bigger cut of league revenue; players want benefits long after their playing days are over; Goodell wants to eliminate two preseason games and instead add two games to the regular season schedule; the NFL wants to cut down on concussions.
If you look at it with one eye open, you can identify the hypocrisy between what the league envisions and what is reality. For a commissioner and a group of higher-ups so “dedicated” to preventing their players, their employees, from getting hurt and suffering long-term ramifications from on-the-field contact, doesn’t it smell a little rank that said changes are being proposed?
We’ve all heard the saying, “You can’t have your cake and eat it, too,” and that line perfectly applies to what is taking place in these negotiations. Yes, the players know what they sign up for, but the NFL subliminally understands whose hands they are tying once their employees’ careers are over and done with. Fining “illegal hits” to set an example for your brand (or to set an example of how you want your brand to look to the public and the media) yet still advocating for a longer season is like Eavnder Holyfield saying, “You know what, Tyson — you bit off a chunk of my ear and that’s bullshit. But hey, can you also bite off my left index finger?”
It makes no sense. I’m all for expansion if it means more games and more football, not to mention season-ticket holders getting a fair shake when it comes to a bigger bang for their buck, but sacrificing your morals to achieve an extra billion or two in revenue?
That method of thinking is a huge stain on the nice Armani suit the NFL wears day in and day out. The funny thing is that people don’t remember suits; they only remember those that wear them.
Money, get away
Get a good job with more pay and you’re okay
Money, it’s a gas
Grab that cash with both hands and make a stash
New car, caviar, four star daydream,
Think I’ll buy me a football team
– Pink Floyd, “Money”