New York Giants offensive tackle, Nate Solder, sent warning shots to the NFL on Friday about the murky future of the league’s upcoming season.
Big Blue’s NFLPA representative took to Twitter to voice his displeasure with the league’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Namely, what he perceives as a lack of initiative to put their players’ health first. Solder kept things brief and “simple” stating that “if the NFL doesn’t do their part to keep players healthy there is no football in 2020.”
If the NFL doesn’t do their part to keep players healthy there is no football in 2020. It’s that simple.
— Nate Solder (@soldernate) July 10, 2020
According to North Jersey Media Group’s Art Stapelton, Solder also took part in a conference call on Friday afternoon involving the players’ union in hopes of resolving negotiations prior to the start of training camp on July 28th.
This comes on the heels of NFLPA president J.C. Tretter claiming that the NFL’s “resistance to change” and “pervasive thought process will stop this season in its tracks.” Tretter also added that the NFL has been “unwilling to prioritize player safety.”
Solder and Tretter are far from the only players outraged by the recent handlings of the pandemic in the NFL. The league’s decision to ban postgame “jersey swaps” was hit with a whirlwind of backlash from players, including Solder’s teammate Golden Tate who hinted at the hypocritical thinking behind the new rule.
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NFLPA Submits Counterproposal
NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported on Friday that members of the NFL Management Council Executive Committee and NFLPA Executive Committee are scheduled for a Monday conference call to hammer out concerning issues from both parties.
According to informed sources close to Pelissero, the NFLPA has issued an economic counterproposal to the league ahead of their planned call.
The NFLPA detailed the following specifics within the counterproposal: no escrow of 2020 salaries, a flat salary cap of $198.2 million for 2021, the spread of revenue losses from this year over the 2022-2030 salary caps and payment of all fully guaranteed money even if games are canceled due to the pandemic.
Pelissero also added that a major component of the counterproposal focuses on a “COVID-19 risk stipend” which would pay up to $500,000 to the players if games were canceled.
These counterproposals, of course, stem from a report on Tuesday that the NFL had proposed numerous potential pay cuts to players, including placing 35% of player salaries in escrow.
While the NFL still hopes to proceed with their season as close to originally planned, numerous sports leagues have since drastically altered their 2020 plans. The MLB is gearing up to play in empty stadiums. The NBA is locked away in a bubble in Orlando. In college sports, the Ivy League has canceled all competitive sports until January 1, while numerous FBS football programs are leaning towards a conference-only schedule.
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