I have purposely been avoiding discussing the impending labor dispute over the last few weeks, but after today’s events I think it’s finally time to bring up the issue. The players union and the owners were supposed to meet for several hours on Thursday, but the two sides decided to call it off. Reports are that the two sides aren’t making any progress, which is certainly a concern for fans of the NFL. I still think a deal will get done before the season is locked out, but I’m much less confident after today.
There are plenty of issues the two sides are dealing with, but it looks like the major sticking point is the division of revenue between the owners and players. From what I understand, the players got 60% in the previous agreement, but the owners want to cut that share to just over 40%. That’s an awfully big chunk to get cut out, and the players don’t want anything to do with it. Add that to the rookie wage scale and 18-game schedule, and we have a real problem here. I don’t think it’s time to hit the panic button just yet, but it’s getting awfully close.
If the two sides don’t come to an agreement before the March deadline, it could have a major effect on the offseason preparation for the Rams. The offense is learning a new system, and Sam Bradford is still young. This thing could be a disaster, so it’s worth keeping an eye on over the next several weeks.