ESPN reports that multiple sources indicate that NFL owners are voting this afternoon on a new global labor agreement — no special favors for the named plaintiffs — which if approved, will go to players this evening.
Players have scheduled an 8 p.m. ET conference call with their executive committee and player reps to decide whether to accept an approved settlement from owners, and how to start the voting process for the 1,900 players who have to decide if they want to vote in a recertified union.
NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith addressed the ongoing negotiations in a short news conference outside the trade association’s Washington, D.C., headquarters.
“We continue to talk. There are some issues that are outstanding that are left to resolve,” Smith said.
He also said the decision to recertify as a union wouldn’t be taken lightly, just as the choice to decertify in March was taken seriously “because we were a real union” — taking a shot at owners’ claims that the NFLPA’s decertification was a “sham.”
“The decision to decertify as a union was a significant one,” Smith said. “Every individual person has to make a decision on whether they want to become part of a union. The individual decisions are something that our players take extremely serious.”
As part of the proposed settlement the owners will vote on, the 10 plaintiffs who attached their names to the players’ antitrust lawsuit against the NFL — including Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees – will not net any financial or tactical gains, according to sources.
According to multiple sources, the proposed labor agreement doesn’t change the status of any of the plaintiffs. For example, a request by San Diego Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson to receive a $10 million settlement won’t happen.
Any conversations about changing the franchise rule in favor of Manning and Brees, a rule that would allow a player to be franchised once in his career, went unanswered, according to sources.
The proposed deal keeps franchise tagging rules as they have been in past agreements.