The Super Bowl is a bitter sweet event for most football fans; it's the biggest football game in the world but it's the last football game of the season. Even though only two teams play in America's biggest annual sporting event, fans from all 32 teams sit on the edge of their seats from the opening kick to the final seconds of the game. Even non-football fans watch the Super Bowl to catch the commercials that multi-million dollar companies spent the entire football season writing, shooting and editing (and spending 90 percent of their revenue on). Everybody loves the Super Bowl.
However, as Americans bask in the soft white glow of the greatest sport's greatest game, many of us will be focused on the fact that this game could be the last football game that we have the pleasure of watching in a long time. The CBA expires in 25 days and some change, and when it does, the NFL will officially enter into lockout mode. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but if the players and owners are preparing for a lockout, it's best that we, as fans, do too.
The New York Times reporter, Ken Belson, explains how players have been preparing.
Since 2009, the players union has advised its members to save 25 percent of their incomes each year, and build a nest egg that will cover at least one year’s worth of living expenses. In addition to holding seminars and sending out e-mail reminders, the union has hired a company, Financial Finesse, to create an online program that players can use to determine whether they have enough in the bank.
Belson continued to write that the NFLPA has increased their annual dues to $15,000 from $10,000 in 2009. The extra money will be used to give players a loan, if needed during the lockout, of up to $60,000, based on how much they've contributed over the years.
ESPN's Adam Schefter explain how the owners are preparing for the potential lockout.
Under the terms of the CBA that govern uncapped years, each of the NFL's 32 teams was not required to fund player benefits such as 401K plans that are not in effect in uncapped years, saving each team $10 million that the NFL is holding on to, according to multiple team sources.
This savings of $320 million could be used to help offset some of the costs during the early stages of a lockout. The league continued funding pension, disability, 88 plan, post-retirement medical care and other benefits, and has committed to fund all benefits for retirees even after the CBA expires and even if there is a lockout.
So, what should we as fans do to prepare?
We as fans should prepare by getting ready to watch a lot of college football, because, in the end, if there is a lockout, we're the ones that lose the most.
Enjoy today as much as you can because there's a chance that today's game could be the last for a while.