Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

28 Apr 2011

NFLPA Tells Players, Agents Football Operations Can Resume

Counsel for the NFLPA have sent an email informing players and agents that the lockout is lifted and that NFL teams should allow players to use the facilities for workouts and meetings with coaches.

NFLLockout.com, a website created and operated by the NFLPA, posted the email it sent on Thursday:

"Last night, Judge Nelson issued a 20 page decision denying the NFL’s request to stay (delay) the injunction she issued on Monday in the Brady v. NFL litigation that the NFL must stop the lockout. The decision denying the stay is once again very strong, and rejected all of the NFL’s arguments. Accordingly, the order ending the lockout is in full, immediate force.

"The NFL has filed for an emergency stay with the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, while the Eighth Circuit considers the NFL’s stay request. Unless and until such a request is granted, however, we believe the 2011 League Year now has to begin; the Clubs must open their facilities to allow players to work out, meet with coaches and otherwise perform their jobs; and the NFL and the Clubs cannot collectively continue to refuse to deal with players. It is our view that the NFL and the Clubs will be in contempt of court if they do not comply with the order unless and until they hear differently from the Eighth Circuit. We will let you know later today what the NFL is going to do to comply with this order, and what the specific schedule will be going forward."

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello tells Albert Breer of the NFL Network that teams were informed that the status quo, i.e. no free agent signings or players trades, remains in effect until further notice.

Posted by: Brian McIntyre on 28 Apr 2011

3 comments, Last at 28 Apr 2011, 12:20pm by ChicagoRaider


by nuk :: Thu, 04/28/2011 - 11:35am

20 pages to say no. I'm glad I'm not a lawyer.

by ChicagoRaider :: Thu, 04/28/2011 - 12:20pm

These decisions are reviewed by the court of appeals on the basis of whether she abused her discretion. Not explaining the reasons for the decision (not just "no") is one of the best ways to get your order nullified on appeal. So 20 pages it is.

by jds (not verified) :: Thu, 04/28/2011 - 11:53am

This story is all going by the book, so no one should get too bent out of shape over this.

What is going to happen next is that the appeal court is going to grant the stay. That's how it always happens.

Then both the NFL and the NFLPA are going to issue statements that say the stay is proper/the stay is improper, yada yada yada. And then we will all sit around until the appeal court gets time to hear the case. During that time, I hope some negotiations/mediation take place, although they may not, because it is too soon to try to settle this, both sides know crunch time is really in August.

Only after the appeal court rules, and the NFL loses there (my bet is that it is a 75/25 odds against the NFL) will the league year start. And I am sure the NFL has a plan and rules on how that will work.

This just continues the program of two to three months of lawyers, followed by real bargaining/negotiations. Each side is working on that time table, so no need to get upset.