The NFL owners are set to vote on the CBA proposal. The players are not. The hang up? The re-certification of the NFLPA. The players want it to be done in person at the training facilities where they can physically sign the cards and turn them in. The NFL wants it to be agreed before they lift the lockout.
The repercussions? Simple. If the NFL lifts the lockout with a verbal agreement of a new CBA and the players vote to ratify that CBA then football could start sometime next week with players reporting to team facilities to vote on the re-certification of the union.
The problem? Simple too. If the players decide against certification of the union, something that some players are advocating, then the league will again close it’s doors and the entire season of 2011 will be in jeopardy as the process will then only be handled in the courts.
It would be a public nightmare.
On the other hand, if the owners wait for the players to “mail” in their votes, it would almost be inevitable that the HOF game will be cancelled as it could take a week or more to finalize the restoration of the former union. Know this, without the union in place, the CBA means nothing as it will allow any incoming players to sue the league for anti-trust violations. Under a CBA with a union, the league is exempt from anti-trust law.
So should the NFL approve a new CBA and lift the lockout without a concrete guarantee that the players will reform as a union?