On Friday evening, the NFL Players Association officially agreed to the most recent proposal from the NFL regarding plans for the 2020 season amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The last of sticking points seemed to be the money—how the salary cap will be handled in the future, will the players get paid if a season doesn’t happen, etc. Now that the two sides have agreed to terms, the negotiations are over. Training camp is coming.
While not all of the details are public quite yet, here are some of the most important points that have been leaked thus far:
- The salary cap loss caused by lost income in 2020 will be spread out over the next four years so that teams won’t take on a huge salary cap hit next year. (Per The Athletic)
- If the season is stopped and games are not played, players will not get paid... immediately. Previously, because there was no force majeure clause, the players could’ve legally been obligated to get paid even with cancelled games. The two sides, however, agreed that players wouldn’t get paid right away. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport has the details:
Clarity on this point on base salaries: Any amount not paid in 2020 becomes guaranteed in the future year for the player. Just won’t be paid right now. If a player is a free agent, there is a pool of money from the NFL to make up any shortfall in future contract. https://t.co/o6zqQFEdRS— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 24, 2020
- Training camp will have a significant ramp-up period and actual practices aren’t coming for at least two weeks. Here’s the basic schedule, per MMQB’s Albert Breer:
Per sources, camp timeline in the NFL's proposal ...— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) July 24, 2020
Day 1: Testing/virtual meetings.
Days 2-3: Virtual meetings.
Day 4: Testing/virtual meetings.
Days 5-6: Physicals.
Days 7-15: Strength and conditioning (with a day off.)
Day 16: Practice starts.
Day 21: First padded practice.
We’ll continue to navigate as more details are leaked to the public, but for now, the red tape is gone. It’s time to return to football. Let’s just please stay healthy enough to actually play some games this year!
Here’s the official statement from the NFLPA:
“Our NFLPA Board of Representatives voted to adopt, by a count of 29-3, the proposed amendments to the 2020 Collective Bargaining Agreement to protect our players’ health, safety and financial well-being.”
Here are the opt-out options for players:
Details on two types of opt-outs, which are irrevocable and due 7 days from NFL-NFLPA deal being finalized:— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) July 24, 2020
- High risk: $350,000 stipend with no offset, accrued/credited season
- Voluntary: $150,000 salary advance, no accrued/credited season
Either way, contract tolls.
Here’s a statement from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell:
The NFL clubs and the NFL Players Association approved an agreement that broadly resolves all outstanding issues relating to the opening of training camps and start of the 2020 season. Training camps will begin as scheduled.
We have worked collaboratively to develop a comprehensive set of protocols designed to minimize risk for fans, players, and club and league personnel. These plans have been guided by the medical directors of the NFL and the NFLPA and have been reviewed and endorsed by independent medical and public health experts, including the CDC, and many state and local public health officials. The season will undoubtedly present new and additional challenges, but we are committed to playing a safe and complete 2020 season, culminating with the Super Bowl.