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The Details of the New Collective Bargaining Agreement

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July 25th 2011. The day of the new CBA. As much hassle as this has put us through as fans, its been even more of one for the two sides. Two years of negotiations has finally been resolved when a normal league year was in dire straits. Give credit to the two sides led by Roger Goodell and DeMaurice Smith for being able to settle their differences. The league is a better one after this agreement and with the details, we will have football for a long time. The CBA is complicated so I tried to explain some of the details that it consists of.

CBA Length: The new CBA will last ten years. One of the stumbling blocks in the last week was and opt out clause in the later years. The owners had one in the last CBA which is why we were in the situation we were in. After discussions on the weekend and Monday morning, there will be no opt out and we will have football for 10 years. After that one expires, the NFL Draft will still happen just like this year.

Revenue Split - The deals biggest stumbling block was how to split the money in a $9-billion business. Splitting that much money isn't easy which is why it took so long. The two sides agreed to a split were the players must receive 47% of the revenue on average. On the previous CBA, the split was close to 50-50.

18 Game Season - One of the things commissioner Goodell wanted in the new agreement was an 18 game season with a two game pre-season. It didn't take long for this to be eliminated but was postponed for discussion until at least 2013.

Draft Picks - A new rookie wage system was installed cutting the amount of money that a number one overall pick would receive by over half. Rookies would receive four year contracts with a fifth year team option that pays 150% of the average wage at that position. Rookie contracts are also going to be much simpler so that holdouts occur less. For undrafted rookies, a cap for how much of a bonus you can give was put in limiting them to a $75,000 (poor guys).

Owner Revenue Sharing - The owners put in a way so that the high income teams like the Cowboys share revenue with teams in trouble like Jacksonville. Also the higher earning teams will also be taxed higher than low revenue team.

Salary Cap - The cap was scaled back to $120 million but teams can borrow $3 million to use against future caps and another $3.5 million from player performance bonus'. The cap is lower than before but can go up with increased revenue.

Spending Floor - Teams in the first year of the CBA must spend 99% of the cap. For 2012-2013 they have to spend 95% of the salary cap and from 2013 on they must spend 89% of the cap.

Player Safety - Player safety rules have changed. Two a days in training camp are now banned. Two practices are allowed if one is without pads. Players also are getting more days off during the bye week.

Retiree Benefits - An extra billion will be added in benefits for retired players. $620 million is added to whats called the legacy fund which is a pension for players that played prior to 1993.

Other Small Tidbits -

  • No hitting the first three days of camp
  • Teams have 17 days to sign RFA's
  • Teams have until September 20 to sign their franchise players to long-term deals. Probably pushed back due to lockout
  • Again, the 2021 draft is included in the CBA
  • Minimum salaries go up by $50,000 and will continue to increase.
  • Franchise tag wage will be based off percentage of the cap instead of average of top 10 at position. Still unknown how this work.
  • No more judicial oversight
Thanks to for information.