The National Football League has a very long history. It all began when representatives of more than 20 NFL clubs met at a hotel in Cleveland, Ohio in 1922 to address a full agenda. During this meeting the owner’s officially changed the league’s name from the American Professional Football Association to the National Football League. In 1956, long before the league became the massively profitable economic force it is today, the players organized themselves into a union, the NFL Players Association. “The union was formed due to the poor conditions involving health care and threats to an individual’s livelihood if injury occurred.” (ehow, 2010) In the years thereafter, a number of events, such as strikes and litigation, have established the fundamental benefits that players enjoy to this day. The most memorable and perhaps most significant event of the NFL Players Association history was the strike of 1987. The strike was for the players “to win the right to free agency and to guarantee themselves a larger slice of the pie.” (Shmoop, 2010)
Nevertheless, the NFL owners wanted to maintain the league’s profitability by making sure the player salaries did not grow faster than revenue. One of the most important strategies for controlling salaries was by limiting free agency – the ability of a player to sell his services to the highest bidder on the open market once he reached the end of his contract. The owner’s were determined not to be bullied by the player’s union and resolved that games would go on as scheduled with or without the players. The replacement NFL players definitely left something to be desired by the fans and most stayed away. “Stadium attendance fell to about one-fo...
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...in these revenues would hurt working families and the city as a whole, further compounding the difficulties we are facing due to the ongoing economic downturn.”(USA TODAY 2011)
Chavis, J. (1999-2011). NFL Union History. Retrieved February 18, 2011 from
Shmoop University (2010). Labor in History of the NFL. Retrieved February 18, 2011 from
USA TODAY, U.S. mayors plead with NFL to avoid work stoppage. February 15, 2011 by Sean Leahy.
Ezine Articles (2010). NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement Issues. Retrieved February 23, 2011 from http://ezinearticles.com/?NFL-Colective-Bargaining-Agreement-Issues&id=4464385
CSNBALTIMORE.COM (2011). NFL has long history of labor battles. Retrieved February23, 2011 by Joe Platania.
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