Report: NFLPA* tells incoming players not to attend draft http://wp.me/p14QSB-usF
Forget the handshake at the podium. Forget the anxious anticipation as a prospective player waits for his name to be called in the green room. Forget the photo opportunity as Roger Goodell and a player hold up a Broncos jersey.
These memorable images are made possible by one thing - attendance.
The NFLPA* is trying to change all this. They have already contacted 17 NFL prospects and are advising that all players invited to the NFL Draft event in New York decline the invitation. What makes this more interesting is the fact the NFLPA* is technically no longer a union (hence the asterisk). This means that they don't really have any right to make these prospects do anything. Even if they hadn't decertified, they still would not be able to order these prospects to do anything. These people are not NFL players, as of this moment, and therefore are not under the thumb of the NFLPA.
Although it no longer represents players, the NFLPA still exists "as a professional trade association with the mission of supporting the interests and rights of current and former professional football players," it said after decertifying.
This is merely a suggestion and a bold one, at that.
It remains to be seen what will happen with this boycott. Could there be a situation where a handful of prospects decide to go anyways? Could they be bribed into going? What would the ramifications be of that? Would they be ridiculed by other NFL players? Would teams be more or less likely to draft them based on their cooperation or lack thereof?
If all of the NFL prospects decide to follow through with the boycott, could you imagine what would happen on draft day? There are already whispers of the NFLPA* dealing separately from NFL coverage of the draft and allowing player reaction and interviews to be broadcast outside the scope of the Draft Day coverage. That could make for an interesting viewer experience as people flip channels back and forth to see both the draft coverage and player reaction.
With only 45 days until the NFL Draft, it's going to be very interesting to see how this plays out.