The NFL and NFLPA are headed to the table to work on the next collective bargaining agreement as the current one ends after the 2020 season. Both sides have already started talking, but negotiations will ramp up over the next few months and into the next season.
One of the big items on the table is adding one to two extra games. I took a few minutes after the end of Saturday’s Pro Bowl practice to talk to a few players about how they felt about adding more playing time to their season.
There are a lot of things on the table when it comes to this next CBA. Guaranteed salaries, increasing minimums for veterans and rookies, drug policies, revenue sharing, lifetime health insurance… it’s a long list. One of the biggest changes the owners would like is to add at least one game to the season. And it’s not something the players are necessarily happy about, but may not have a choice in.
It was the second day of practice for both the AFC and NFC Pro Bowl teams at the 2020 Pro Bowl. It was a typical Pro Bowl practice, lots of dancing, goofing off, and defensive players playing offensive positions. It’s a time for players to relax, enjoy time with fellow NFL players, spend some quality time with their families, and interact with fans.
But if you ever are able to come to the Pro Bowl and watch these practices, what you notice most is the fun the players are having on the field. It looks like one giant backyard game, where rules are loosely applied and roles are interchangeable.
After 2 days of formal NFL club interviews, and an introductory press conference by executive director Jim Nagy, day 3 of the Reese’s Senior Bowl brought Media Day. This was followed by this morning’s official National Scouting weight-in.
This day has to be the most productive for all media members. It’s a day that gives you a chance to ask players questions, much like a meet and greet experience. It’s great exposure for players that are expected to take their talents to the next level.
It’s one of many great things the executive director does very well; making players available to the media. In turn, it gives that player a chance to tell what they are expecting and what they want to show coaches and scouts. As we all know, the more exposure for a player, the better.
As we head into January 2020, teams that didn’t make the playoffs need to look inward to see what went wrong. Every season there are changes that have to be made, changes that probably should be made then aren’t, and changes that feel like they change a franchise. Often those changes start with the head coaches.
Being a head coach in the NFL is a very hard job. Something only a large handful has been able to execute well. Teams are constantly on the lookout for “the guy”. The one that will be there for years, bringing success to the franchise. This year, we have 4 teams, possibly 5, that are once again on the hunt for a new head coach. Let’s take a look at who they may hiring.
This week, the nominees from each NFL team were announced for one of my favorite professional sports awards, the Walter Payton Man of the Year. This award recognizes players for their volunteer and charity work, not just their play on the field. These are men of character who give back to the communities that support their NFL careers.
It was originally called the NFL Man of the Year, but in 1999, after the death of Chicago Bears running back Walter Payton, who won the award in 1977, it was renamed to honor his legacy as a humanitarian. There are currently six active layers who have won the award — Drew Brees, Jason Witten, Thomas Davis, Larry Fitzgerald, Eli Manning and J.J. Watt.
Let’s take a look at the men who will be representing the NFC South teams as this year’s finalists…
The NFL supports some worthy causes throughout their season. In October, they support cancer awareness with their Crucial Catch Campaign. In November, they show support for our Armed Services and Veterans with their Salute to Service. They also support kids getting physically active and learn and maintain healthy habits with the Play 60 initiative.
December 14, 2019, at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, the winner of the most coveted award in all of college football will be announced: the 2019 Heisman trophy.
On average, 3-4 players are typically invited as a finalist. This year, however, I believe the race comes down to two candidates.
The favorite being Joe Burrow, the outstanding Louisiana State University Tiger’s quarterback. Burrow without a doubt has been the most consistent quarterback in the country. The Ohio State transfer will take his Tigers to the SEC championship game against the Georgia Bulldogs at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.
On Monday, Burrow (via Teleconference) told the national media – “We’re fired up to be here. LSU hasn’t been there since 2011, so this is one of the goals we had for the season. So we’re fired up to play.”
With Heisman ballots already out. Many are said to be holding off till most of the conference games are played this weekend. If Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers play up to their expectations, there is very little doubt among experts that you will hear Joe Burrow named called December 14. Or is there?
About the author: Liz Bhandari is an NFL writer, podcaster, and blogger based out of Manchester, England. She is the host of the popular podcast @GridironWine and is the event planner for #NFLUKFanMeetUp events.
Last week, rumours circulated around the Los Angeles Chargers being linked with a move to London. It was very quickly denied by the owner, Dean Spanos who said he has no intention of moving the franchise to London despite reports of a potential relocation. The best part though was their social media team’s reaction and reference to the iconic scene in Wolf of Wall Street where Leonardo Di Caprio’s character Jordan Belfort tells the office, “I ain’t f****** leaving!”.
The trade deadline has passed, and it was pretty uneventful. Yes, there were a few trades in the week leading up, but, as it often does, it ended up being a lot of rumors and wishful thinking. What this week has brought, however, is a handful of odd stories that have many shaking their heads.
Let’s start with Tom Brady. Brady, the 42yr old, future Hall of Fame, current Patriots quarterback, has never played for another team and truly no one could imagine him doing so. Until this week. I think it started with Jason La Canfora’s article saying Brady has an interest in playing for the Los Angeles Chargers next year if he’s not in New England. It snowballed after that, with fans and media grabbing the idea and running with it.
As the NFL season heads into Week 5, I’m seeing a bunch of complaints from fans regarding the officiating. Everything from missed to horrendous calls is being written about in social media and is causing much consternation among fan bases. Some are even taking these calls personally.
As for me, I tend to be a bit of a stickler for grammar and such things. I like it when people use the correct terms for officials and I very seldom see people appropriately credit the Line Judge or Referee with doing the job they have.
So, I thought it might be time to share with you all the basics of NFL Officiating: what are the “positions” and duties of these people who seem to have more and more impact on how games are being played.