On Thursday, the NFLPA gathered in Los Angeles to discuss the owners’ latest proposal for the collective bargaining agreement. Although there is no true deadline for an agreement, Dan Graziano of ESPN.com (on Twitter) hears that there is some sense of urgency within the union to work out an accord. It’s expected that more meetings between the two sides, or at least internally for the NFLPA, will be scheduled for next week.
Some player representatives continue to be staunchly opposed to an expanded 17-game season, which is the foremost issue in the talks. Owners are looking for the new CBA to give them the option to add an extra game between 2021 and 2023. The proposal would boost the players’ cut from 47% of league revenue to 48.5%, a number that would inch even higher if the option is triggered.
The union is looking for ways to make the expanded season “more palatable for players,” Graziano reports. The owners’ say they’ll eliminate one preseason game for every regular season game that’s added. Meanwhile, their proposal still calls for only one bye week. In theory, we’d speculate that a compromise could include the addition of a second bye week, to give players additional in-season rest.
Both sides are aiming to get a new deal done in time for the start of the 2020 league year on March 18, Graziano hears. If that happens, the fresh CBA would supersede the final year of the existing one and take both sides through 2029.