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Senator to NFL Owners: Open Your Books

Earlier this month I wrote that one of the biggest issues in the negotiations between the NFL and NFL Players Association for a new Collective Bargaining Agreement was trust. Now it seems that West Virginia Sen. Jay Rockefeller recently got involved in the NFL's possible lockout and asked NFL owners to open their books to the players union, something that the NFLPA has been asking for but the owners have been unwilling to do.

Rockefeller: What I'd like to see from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and the owners is a simple display of good faith: Show the union your books. Don't keep secrets. If there are financial pressures that keep you from agreeing to the revenue-sharing plan proposed by the players, let's see the proof. Ask a neutral third party to review your financial data, redact anything sensitive and prepare an unbiased bottom-line assessment of the league's finances.

The only team right now that has been willing to open their financial books to the public is the Green Bay Packers, who showed a $9.8 million profit in the most recent fiscal year calculated, compared to the $20.1 million the year before.

It's unclear whether or not the NFL will take the senator's request seriously but a senator asking the league to do something isn't the same as the players. There are only six days before the NFL could enter into a lockout.

Stay Tuned.