Kalu: Show Me the Money!


Is it possible to take dollar amounts out of the equation to form an opinion about which side of the NFL’s CBA saga has the most valid argument?  The reason for such an obscure question is because if any player tries to convince me that they are underpaid, I will be forced to remind them that, though it is a job, it is also the fulfillment of a dream to get paid any amount of money to PLAY the greatest game on God’s green earth. 

The average salary for an individual graduating from college is $46,000. The rookie minimum is almost five times greater than that.  On the flip side, if any of the team owners tried to convince me that they are losing money or feel that they are giving back too much of their profits, I would be forced to ask them to prove it by providing financials and remind them that, in many instances, the tax payers dollars offset the cost of these grand stadiums the owners get credit for (the same taxpayers you charge $5 for a bottle of water).  This is where the arguments become too subjective to clearly determine which side is correct in their beliefs. 

It seems that the fans that side with the owners decision to not open their books always point out that their (fans) employers do not have to prove to them how much money his company makes, so why should the owners of NFL teams have to do the same?  The makeup and workings of every industry is different and should not be compared to one another to prove a point that holds true in one but not the other.

 After 12 seasons in the NFL and a lifetime of being a fan, I see the relationship between the owners and collective players as a hybrid partnership, more so than strictly the employer-employee relationship.  In this partnership, the team owners are taking on the financial risk, while the players are taking on the risk of their health and lives while providing sweat equity.  Investing cash into a project is not the only action required to become a partner in a business relationship. 

The owners need to have more respect for the player’s role in the success of the NFL.  I have no problem with the owner of a team stating that they are only willing to split a certain percentage with the players because they feel the current agreement is going to lead to future financial complications for the league.  That is a legitimate argument but you need to prove it.  The only way to prove it is to give the NFLPA access to each team’s accounting books (and not the set they use to avoid paying taxes).  If that is done the NFLPA should to be honest in reviewing the material, and be open to give money back, if it will ensure the success of the league for years to come.

Lastly, rest in peace, Drew Hill.

Let me know what you think about my stance on this.

  • Rich


    I have to disagree. I don’t think the owners should have to show the NFLPA their books at all. The players are EMPLOYEES. I certainly can’t demand that my boss show me the company’s books jsut because I think he makes to mych money.

    Yes…you pointed this out in your post…but what you failed to point out is that as an EMPLOYEE, you have a choice. If an employee does not like where he/she works…they are free to go elsewhere to work and make money. Sure…a desk job or the CFL may not pay nearly as nicely as the NFL does…but that is the choce the player needs to make.

    Yes…I think the owners are greedy but at the end of the day, they are the EMPLOYER and are ultimately paying the salaries and taking on the risk of running a business. I just don’t feel they are obligatred to open their books.

    • Vette

      I love your comment!

  • Terry

    I like the way everyone talks about the fans taking sides. When are the owners and the players going to consider the fans. The fans are the ones that spent $9,000,000,000 to put in the coffers in teh first place. The fans are the ones that are losing their jobs. The fans are the ones that worry about vacations thios summer with gas approaching $4.00/gallon. Neither the owners or the players will have to give up their tickets or not go onvacation because they can not afford it. The two sides need to grow up and sit down together and get this deal done. Their is certainly enough money to go around for both sides. Hey, a novel idea, why don’t the players and owners both take a cut and lower ticvket prices so ordinary families can go to a game. just a thought

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