Good Morning, Broncos fans! Expectations remain that the NFLPA's executive committee and 32 player reps will vote to approve the CBA, although a pair of emails from Drew Brees to his Saints teammates details a shorter and more chaotic timeline than was reported yesterday. According to Brees, free agency may begin on Tuesday at noon for all parties - meaning no exclusive negotiating period for teams to retain their own UFAs, and with both veterans and undrafted rookies able to sign contracts at that point. Brees also wrote that some teams may aim to open training camps by Thursday, with players reporting the day before to check in and possibly receive their physicals.
It being the weekend, I took some time today (Saturday) and went out for a ‘walk’. Just so you understand, around the house I can generally manage okay with just a cane. When I’m traveling, the wheelchair is a necessity - there are no other choices there. When I go outside to walk, it’s two canes, one on each side. We have the great good fortune now to live next to a beautiful, small but long park that spans two blocks, swaying down the middle of each, starting at the base of a hill to the north and leading vaguely southward to an opening that takes you down to a main street, that in return brings you to another pathway, if your legs are willing. Carlsbad, now my home, has gotten more than its usual share of rain this past year, for a change. The off-shore currents brought us a present - the beautiful rains, reloading the reservoirs and giving the flora a much-needed drink. As a result, the tropical plants are lush this year, all are currently in bloom and the air is so rich that you can taste it on your tongue, a rare tropical miasma that is as softly sweet as it is invigorating. Today is a good day for me, and I felt a need to reconnect with the beauty that’s just next door.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! Adam Schefter is reporting that the players and owners have come to an agreement on all remaining issues, and the NFLPA is planning a major press conference tomorrow. The NFLPA's executive committee reportedly plans to vote on the deal tomorrow, with the 32 team reps to then vote on whether to recommend the deal to the players, who would report to camps on Wednesday and vote whether to recertify and ratify the CBA. Once the NFLPA has enough votes to recertify, teams would be able to renegotiate existing deals and negotiate with their own free agents starting on Wednesday, although no contracts would be signed until Saturday, July 30 at 2PM ET.
The owners have apparently relented on the Friday deadline to negotiate the issues that must be collectively bargained (and thus must wait until the union recertifies) such as player discipline, benefits and safety. According to Schefter, De Smith has promised the Commish that the NFLPA would work to settle those issues before the first scheduled preseason games, and apparently Smith has taken over much of the workload from Jeffrey Kessler as a show of good faith to the owners, who are mistrustful of Kessler.
Really, was that all so bad? Haha just kidding. Obviously, we're excited to be able to move on tomorrow from all this labor stuff and get back to writing about real, actual football. Thanks as always for your readership and support.
Chris Mortensen is reporting on ESPNEWS that the NFLPA's executive committee is expected to vote on the new CBA on Monday, with players then showing up at training camps on Wednesday with the intention of recertifying the players' union. Once the union is recertified, the two sides will be able to collectively bargain the remaining issues such as personal conduct, benefits and player safety. According to Mortensen, such a timeline would likely mean that free agency would commence on Saturday July 30, one week from today.
If the NFL was a game of Monopoly, yesterday Perrish Cox pulled the Go To Jail card.
Do not pass Dove Valley. Do not collect $405,000.
In this game, you can't roll doubles, nor can you purchase (for any amount of money) a Get Out Of Jail Free card from Demaryius Thomas or Cassius Vaughn. They are too busy looking for cover.
Cox is easy pickins, Broncos fans. You'll see dozens of columns over the next month criticizing his character and his integrity. Further, you'll hear a lot of pundits play the I told you so card. And that's just fine. Fans aren't required to withhold judgement until all the facts are in. While Cox is innocent until proven guilty in the court of law, as a member of the Denver Broncos, the story told in the arrest warrent is easily enough for the fans and the Broncos to run him out of town.
Roger Goodell won't be distracted by the law. If Cox is guilty, he's in jail; if he's not, Goodell is likely to suspend him for at least six games (Roethlisberger style).
I'm guessing that right now, John Elway could care less how well Perrish Cox plays man coverage.
He can't cover it as a member of the Denver Broncos.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! Beacon of hope Chris Mortensen says there's still a possibility of a vote by the NFLPA sometime this weekend, while it's expected that discussions between the lawyers for the two sides will continue. The players are apparently seeking an opt-out clause (with penalties) for both sides after seven years, although it's described as not being a deal-breaker. Obviously with an agreement still unreached, the calendar set out on Thursday by the Commish which provided for teams to negotiate with their own free agents and draftees starting today (and undrafted players tomorrow) has been delayed.
In what appears to have been timed to follow the release of the arrest warrant in the Perrish Cox rape case, Mike Klis is reporting that the Broncos have hired Jerry Butler to be their new director of player development, a role Butler had held with the Browns for 10 seasons before he was fired in May. According to Klis, Butler's role with the organization is to help players with life off the field, including counseling, education and financial guidance. No word on when he was actually hired, but according to Klis, Butler already started his job earlier in the week. Butler was the fifth-overall pick of the 1979 Draft by the Bills, with whom he spent the entirety of his seven-year career.
The arrest warrant for Perrish Cox was released today, and several Broncos are mentioned in the affidavit. The alleged victim in the sexual assault case spent a night out in September of 2010 with Cox, WR Demaryius Thomas, and her friend Carthy Che, who was dating Cox at the time. Che and the woman both believed they had been drugged the prior night, and the next morning the alleged victim suspected that she had been raped despite not recalling having had intercourse.
I can’t believe these greedy, ungrateful players! They’re just willfully holding this thing up. The owners have given them a great proposal, and these guys say they need more time. Why can’t they read 500 pages in an hour? Is it because most of them can’t read? I’m not saying, I’m just saying… Have you ever read their twits on that Twitter thing? Umm… hello? English class… you should try it sometime. And some of them even use profanity. Don’t they know that their most important purpose in life is being role models to children? They should be talking about Jesus and tax breaks and preventing Muslims from opening mosques or gays from getting married. You know, positive stuff that promotes a stronger America, where everybody who deserves it can enjoy apple pie, and watch football, and those who don’t should just work harder, and maybe it happens for them next year.
Look, the owners have worked hard to create a product that people want to see, and these players should be happy just to get to attach themselves to the genius of these 32 American heroes and benefit from it. I don’t have a pension, and neither does anybody I know. Why should these guys get one? This is America, and we’ve all unanimously decided to accept a lower quality of life than our parents had. That’s democracy, and the majority rules. It’s the greatest country in the world, and these players don’t understand that. They should call me when they get serious about capitalism, democracy, and the Constitution. Let’s practice – We hold these truths to be self-evident, that employees should be happy to have jobs, and should thank the benevolent job creators for their generosity. Four score and seven years ago, the young NFL almost folded, but thanks to the white protestant tenacity of men like George Halas, Curly Lambeau, and Ronald Reagan, it grew and thrived, and now these guys that couldn’t get a job in my family’s snack bar want to make millions of dollars off of the sweat of those visionary entrepreneurs and their heirs. John Quincy Adams and our other Founding Fathers would roll over in their graves, because those people clearly don't know the Constitution.
Happy Friday, Broncos fans! Chris Mortensen
continues to report that a player vote may take place today, is now saying a vote today is unlikely (ed. 11:30AM ET) and that the items still in question are the absence of an opt-out clause and the requirement of recertification as a condition to end the lockout. For some reason, there are also differing opinions on the procedure for recertification, as the owners are suggesting the players do so electronically, while the NFLPA reportedly wants the players to each sign cards once they return to their respective team HQs. To reiterate, the items that Roger Goodell and Jeff Pash said last night would not be changing, specifically player conduct policy, have already been discussed but cannot be collectively bargained or agreed to until the union is recertified and the ratified agreement is submitted to Judge Nelson.