• The lockout is over, at least for tonight

    Judge Susan Nelson has, at least temporarily, found in favor of the players and ruled that the owners must end the lockout immediately. The owners have already announced that they seek a stay of the order. Players win round 1, what happens in round 2?

    Comments 26 Comments
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      The 8th circuit might grant a stay but I think the appeal will go against the league. The appeal will likely be expedited due to a finding from a lower court of irreparable harm but I think Nelson's legal reasoning was sound. In the absence of an NLRB ruling the courts have to accept the decertification and locking out a non-union workforce is obviously collusion.

      Once the appeal is denied the league has to protect itself from anti-trust actions. No salary cap, no free agency restrictions and no draft (the 2011 draft is protected by past agreement). They could look at the NBA case and perhaps put in place a limited salary cap in the form of a luxury tax and perhaps a draft limited to two rounds but even that would be chancy.

      Basically, Peyton Manning is a free agent, Jerry Jones can blow up the bank and the 2012 draft is canceled. That's the only way the league can protect itself from substantial damages in court.
    1. Cris Collinsworth's Avatar
      Is it collusion if the NFL doesn't start signing free agents? This is a dangerous time for NFL owners. Treble damages could start today if they try to get cute.
    1. Pruitt's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Cris Collinsworth View Post
      Is it collusion if the NFL doesn't start signing free agents? This is a dangerous time for NFL owners. Treble damages could start today if they try to get cute.
      Hmmm... Cris - do you think that there's an owner who dares to make offers?
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Cris Collinsworth View Post
      Is it collusion if the NFL doesn't start signing free agents? This is a dangerous time for NFL owners. Treble damages could start today if they try to get cute.
      Nelson carefully mentioned that this ruling was in regard to the lockout only and had nothing to do with the rest of the anti-trust litigation.

      If the league gets cute what can the court do? How does contempt of court work against trade associations? Does Goodell get tossed into a cell? Does James Harrison get fined?
    1. Cris Collinsworth's Avatar
      That was our debate tonight. Could the NFL be held in Contempt of Court? I don't know. But Judge Nelson made some statement today.
    1. Ragar's Avatar
      Interesting would be if there are no signings (UFA, drafts, etc) and a team jsut states that due to the current uncertainty in labor prices, failing investments due to the economy, and potential litigation, I NFL Owner, can not afford to sign any more players? How can a Judge rule collusion on a buisness making a business decision on not hiring a potential employee as long as it doesn't violate discrimination statutes?
    1. Turk Schonert's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Cris Collinsworth View Post
      Is it collusion if the NFL doesn't start signing free agents? This is a dangerous time for NFL owners. Treble damages could start today if they try to get cute.
      Why wouldn't owners just offer free agents lower contracts? If the free agents turn down the offers ... it's on them. There is no written rule that says owners have to pay stupidly for free agents.
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Turk Schonert View Post
      Why wouldn't owners just offer free agents lower contracts? If the free agents turn down the offers ... it's on them. There is no written rule that says owners have to pay stupidly for free agents.
      Turk's just hoping to snag some FAs for the Colonials. We aren't blind man!

      The Al Davis rule, superseded by the Dan Snyder rule, states that all teams must offer stupid amounts of money for free agents.
    1. Ripperlicious's Avatar
      So officially, the season is on pending an appeal?!? This is great news everyone! The quickest possible way that football could've been played for sure. And since there technically isn't a "union" anymore, collusion is a real problem for the owners.

      But I though that they would've played with 2010 rules. I really don't care, because the Packers can get on with repeating!
    1. Ripperlicious's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by msclemons View Post
      Turk's just hoping to snag some FAs for the Colonials. We aren't blind man!

      The Al Davis rule, superseded by the Dan Snyder rule, states that all teams must offer stupid amounts of money for free agents.
      Would Peyton Manning getting P.A.I.D. be included in the "stupid amounts of money" category? All I know is that he changed Indiana from a basketball state to a football state in about 14 years. I think he's worth every penny.
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Nah, Peyton is worth every penny. I was thinking more about Haynesworth and Jawalrus.
    1. Ragar's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Turk Schonert View Post
      Why wouldn't owners just offer free agents lower contracts? If the free agents turn down the offers ... it's on them. There is no written rule that says owners have to pay stupidly for free agents.
      I'ma big fan of minimum wage at this point with non-exempt status (overtime get's paid). Only way to ensure you don't get sued.

      (and yes this comment is sarcastic and non-realistic)
    1. Turk Schonert's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by msclemons View Post
      Nah, Peyton is worth every penny. I was thinking more about Haynesworth and Jawalrus.
      Jawalrus was a draft pick, I can't believe you didn't mention the 80 million dollar investment in Nate Clements ... that was stupid money!
    1. msclemons's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Turk Schonert View Post
      Jawalrus was a draft pick, I can't believe you didn't mention the 80 million dollar investment in Nate Clements ... that was stupid money!
      That too! Although the 80 million figure is a bit of a joke - 30 million of it was backloaded and Nate will never see it. Still, 50 million for a cornerback that can't cover is truly Snyderian.
    1. ReaderM's Avatar
      Sigh..decided to catch up on reading 1 night and miss the whole "lockout" being lifted..All well, here is hoping it hold 4 a bit.. could a be crazy week if FA&Draft both happen at same time
    1. darvon's Avatar
      OK. Here's my read.

      1) I think the NFL should/will act as if this is early March, 2011. Contact is OK. Lifting is OK. BUT league year hasn't started yet.

      2) If the 8th Circuit gives a stay, then back to April, 2011. If the 8th says no stay, wait for the decision. Then KEEP it like March, 2011 until the 8th hands down a decision you like, or you run out of appeals.

      3) If the final decision by the 8th is keep the injunction, then Set up your League rules, 2010 or 2009 or CUSTOM, and start the League Year. You won't get FA until the league year starts, just like March 2011. Should be negligible risk of collusion.
    1. darvon's Avatar
      4) What is REALLY interesting is that it is now PROBABLE that there will by no 2011 Rookie Wage Scale rules. More than 50/50. The sound you here is Andrew Luck bashing his head against the wall.
    1. darvon's Avatar
      Woot. Nailed it with my Suzie prediction. Do I get a Cherry Coke? (goodnite those taste awful).

      Posted last Thursday:

      04-21-2011 08:42 PM #197 darvon

      Judge Suzie Decision on Monday.
      Looks like Injunction is YES.

      Judge Suzie may place a stay on the Injuntion until the Appeal is rendered. Or the Eighth can place it on immediately after filing. Or not.

      If A) or B) happens expect things to stay same for 45-60 days. If C) then NFL must open their doors while lawuit grinds on.

      That is all.
    1. hobbes27's Avatar
      Quote Originally Posted by Turk Schonert View Post
      Why wouldn't owners just offer free agents lower contracts? If the free agents turn down the offers ... it's on them. There is no written rule that says owners have to pay stupidly for free agents.
      Don't you have a possible collusion issue if the contracts offered are too low?
    1. darvon's Avatar
      Originally Posted by Cris Collinsworth
      Is it collusion if the NFL doesn't start signing free agents? This is a dangerous time for NFL owners. Treble damages could start today if they try to get cute.
      It's reasonable and defendable to wait until the judgement on appeal to start the league year, which is different than unlocking the doors. I think the doors need to be unlocked like they would be in late Feb or this year, early March right now.

      Why wouldn't owners just offer free agents lower contracts? If the free agents turn down the offers ... it's on them. There is no written rule that says owners have to pay stupidly for free agents.
      If you can't do it with your #1 draft pick, where there is NO competition, how are you going to do that with a FA, unless collusion. Remember there is still a collusion claim with Judge Doty. Isn't this fun??