Fantasy Football News

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Why Players Union Should Leave NFL Hopefuls out of CBA/Lockout Situation

Despite more recent reports allegedly denying the original report that the Players' Union didn't contact the top draft hopefuls for April's 2011 NFL draft, I found it necessary to address this situation.

Less than a week ago there were several different sources saying that representatives from the NFLPA urged the top collegiate prospects, those who were expected to attend the draft and be taken in the first round, to boycott the draft and watch it at home on television.

Apparently they don't think it would be a good idea for these players to walk across the stage and shake Commissioner Roger Goodell's hand after his name is called.
I really only have one thing to say to this. I really am not taking a side in the NFL labor negotiations, I think both sides are equally to blame and that they should be able to work things out and end this lockout before the start of the season. But it isn't fair at all for these players to drag the soon-to-be-NFLers in to the situation before their name is even called.

Yes, yes, I understand that these guys are the league's future, and that they should understand exactly what is going on and side with the rest of the players. But it's incredibly selfish for the current NFL players to tell the young guys not to attend the draft. The current players obviously went through this same process several years ago and were able to attend the draft, hear his name called and walk across that stage to meet with Goodell before his picture was taken.

They got the entire draft experience, and it's an experience that these guys will never forget. It's the moment when they realize they finally made it to their destination, and reached the professional level. To take this experience away from these players--something they've worked their butts off for the last several months--would be the worst way possible to welcome these players in to the league.
If this ends up happening, which at this point it doesn't really appear as though all the players will boycott, then I will lose so much respect for the current players.

Former New England Patriot linebacker and current ESPN NFL Analyst Tedy Bruschi agreed with the other current players that they should boycott the draft, and hearing his comments on NFL Live nearly made me punch the television screen.

He says it's rookies' "duty" to skip the draft. Uh, no. I'm sorry, Tedy, but it certainly is not their duty. Their duty, ever since the college football season ended, is to prepare themselves for the draft with workouts, meetings and interviews, not to mention the Senior Bowl practice, game and NFL Combine back in February.

Not that I have much authority or say in this at all (I would love it if I did, though), but my message to rookies: ATTEND THE DRAFT IF YOU GET AN INVITE!

Photo credit
Patrick Peterson: Joe Robbins/Getty Images
Cam Newton: Joe Robbins/Getty Images

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