NFL Commissioner stood stoically in front of, what seemed to be every credentialed NFL writer, answering questions at the annual Super Bowl conference on Friday. Understandably so, the questions centered around the Collective Bargaining Agreement, which will expire on March 3rd at 11:59 p.m. It even prompted OCNN reporter Chad Ochocinco (I can't believe I just wrote that), to ask a serious question about the timeframe for a new CBA. Goodell responded:
"I can tell you the commitment on behalf of the ownership is on getting an agreement. I think that’s only going to happen when there’s intense negotiations from your union and the owners. This is the window of opportunity to get this done right. Otherwise, uncertainty is going to seep into all of our operations... I say, let’s get to work, let’s get an agreement that works for everybody."
In truth, Goodell's responses were generic at best, providing general hope that a deal is done soon. And honestly, we have no problem with that. Both sides have positioned themselves to be looked upon favorably by the public when the public simply doesn't care. We just want football.
At least we'll have the NFL Draft. Right?
According to NFL Network's Jason La Canfora writers that the Union and top player agents are discussing the possibility of boycotting the Combine and 2011 NFL Draft activities.
According to several sources familiar with the discussions, central topics included the feasibility of withholding clients from the Feb. 23-March 1 combine in Indianapolis and boycotting draft activities in New York in late April, including the televised event itself at Radio City Music Hall. Several sources characterized the likelihood of a draft boycott as being much more likely or feasible than skipping the combine, but both options are being seriously discussed and considered by the union and agents.
As pointed out by La Canfora, it would be surprising if agents would be willing to follow through on the threat, considering that it would "hurt their clients' draft stock and earning potential."