The owners have approved a new collective bargaining agreement, but that doesn’t mean the NFL lockout will be ending anytime soon. It seems every time the fans get their hopes up that the lockout will finally come to an end of this painful process another issue comes up yet again. Now the up-to-date breaking news is telling the fans that the new collective bargaining agreement for the 2011 NFL season may come to a screeching halt because the players may not exactly be in love with what is on the table. As of late Thursday night many NFL players (one being Jake Scott of the Tennessee Titans) are claiming that the owners haven’t sent the documents to the players regarding a new collective bargaining agreement. The owners approving a new CBA has put the players in a difficult position if they are not in favor of the new deal and that seems to be the growing sentiment. NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith has sent an email out confirming that there is no agreement between the owners and players at this time and there wasn’t a vote by the players after the conference calls on Thursday night. No matter what way you look at it right now we’re still in the same place we were in March, but progress has been made in day 132 of the lockout. Now it’s up to the players to come together and recertify as a union again by Wednesday or the deal is off the table. Clark Hunt joined Fox Sports Radio on The Petros and Money Show to discuss the new collective bargaining agreement approved by the owners, the date he believes the players will hammer out the new collective bargaining agreement and approve it, losing more pre-season games aside from the Hall of Fame game and relationships between the owners and players needing some repairing after this long lockout dispute.
How proud would your father be today? The owners have done there thing with the CBA. Now it’s the players turn?
“It’s a great day for the National Football League and most importantly for our fans. It’s been a very long process. It’s been a tedious process, but the steps we took today in approving a deal hopefully brings us to an end to the lockout. We’re looking forward to getting back to football.”
There seems to be four or five issues the players have to work out in order to get this CBA deal done. Do you have a date that the players will agree to their side of this thing?
“We’re hopeful they will improve and ratify a deal here in the coming days. We understand that the process on their side is complicated, but we are very eager to get back to football. Ideally we would all like to open training camp next week. In order for us to do that we are going to need the players to move along on a fairly high timed schedule.”
I know we lost the Hall of Fame game because that has been cancelled, but could we possibly be in a time frame where we lose more pre-season football games?
“Yeah we’re very hopeful we are not going to lose any of the pre-season other than the Hall of Fame game. The time is getting short. That is one of the reasons the Hall of Fame game was cancelled. We felt it was important for the owners to approve the deal today, which would set the table for the players to come along and approve it as well. If that happens we will be able to open up the facilities and get the players in and get training camp towards the end of next week.”
The negotiations have been contentious at times. Is there going to be some repairing to do in terms of relationships between the owners and players when the CBA is all settled?
“It was a stressful process. The emotions I think at times on both sides were stressed. I think clearly there is going to be a little bit of time needed for the organizations and the players to get back on the same page. I think the best way we can do that is to get training camp open and get our coaching staff in and our players going and get the fans out there and really get the season kicked off.”