The NFL's Collective Bargaining Agreement: A New Plan of Action
It's time for a solution to the problem. There are a lot of things going into this but here is my take. I know that it will not be popular and it may incite riots but this is how it needs to be done for both sides to be responsible. Some will say there are many sides but for my arguments sake there are really only two, the NFL (owners included) and the NFLPA. Here are the issues and the resolutions...
We will have to use made up numbers because the NFL is a very lucrative business and I don't want to trouble myself with how much money they do make. I am a 60/40 guy myself. I have reasons behind it which I will explain but I think that The NFL should keep 60% of the money and the players get 40%. Here is why. The NFL and Ownership should pay into a Player Retirement/ Injury Fund to help players who retire after a certain amount of time (min 5 years) or have career ending injuries. They also need to cover the costs of insurance and stadium up keep as well as management salaries, Staff & Trainer Salaries and other costs. In the end the 60% would be broken up as such:
20%- Retirement/ Injury fund
20%- Stadium Up- Keep/ Team insurance
20%- Team Staff Salaries/ Other Team Expenses
20% - NFL Office Dues by team
To me that seems like a very easy way to break it down. Anything not spent will go in the bank to help in the areas it was designated ONLY. For example, if a team's income is $100 million for the season (I know that's small) after salaries and they only spend $8 million on staff salaries, then they can not take the 12 they saved and put it somewhere else, they bank it for salaries in the future. Simple and effective.
Based on the above model (60/40) the salary cap would be based on 40% of the total NFL Inc0me of the previous year. So In theory the NFL made $3.20 Billion this year, each team would get $100 Million and could only spend $40 Million on salaries. Again the numbers are fake, so don't use them for anything other than the model. After looking at the Way the NFL/Owners have to spend their money this seems fairly reasonable to the players in fact the player end up with a pretty big chunk of change there.
Big debate here, with Matthew Stafford making $40 Million without throwing a pass this was brought up and here is my solution. Pay Scale based on Round and Position. This frees up teams to spend money on veterans that will help teach the young players and make teams more competitive. One of the reasons Oakland has sucked so bad the last few years is JaMarcus Russell owns 9% of the $130 Million Salary Cap. Here is my scale:
QB: No more than $12 Million guaranteed on a 5 year contract
RB/LB: No more than $8 Million guaranteed on a 5 year contract
WR/DB: No more than $10 Million guaranteed on a 5 year contract
OL/ DL: No more than $6 Million guaranteed on a 5 year contract
The numbers above are for round 1 and 2. For rounds 3 & 4 cut it in half and 5-7 cut it in a quarter. This will help free up the money for vets. Also there should be a standard contract length for example round 1 & 2 5-7 years 3 & 4 do 3-5 years and rounds 5-7 max at a 3 year contract!
Currently the roster limit is 53 on the active roster and 45 on the game day roster. While I will not advocate changing the game day roster, 53 is a small amount of players to have on your roster. I would advocate a 60 man roster with 10 more practice squad guys. I am sure with the 40% that players get and the rookie cap this is absolutely do able.
I think this system should be simplified a little bit. You should be a Restricted until your fifth year in the league. This falls in line with the retirement eligibility program. Having to wait until your fifth year in the league assures that teams can spend their cap money a bit more evenly and pay those who are worth their money, this will ensure veterans get a fair shake in Free Agency
Fairly simple system, rookie minimum should be 1/3 of a veteran minimum. So if the vet minimum is $1 million than the rookie minimum is $300,000. That's all I have here
The retirement fund is a simple idea of mine. I believe the NFLPA should require their players to put 20% of their salary into a retirement plan. Then I think the NFL should put 20% of the company profits into a "Player's Retirement Fund." Simply put, the players and the NFL contribute kind of like an IRA but not really because the amounts are not matching. However, Players still have the ability to draw from this fund based on years of service in the league. Position and everything else don't matter it is just based on years in the league. They don't qualify until their fifth year in but there is an injury fund set aside in the same fashion for those whos career is ended before the 5 year minimum.
Anyway, those are my CBA ideas and would love your input! Thanks MHR and