National Football League owners accept terms of proposed new CBA


Should the players vote against the proposal or seek further negotiations, the National Football League has said the current 10-year agreement would remain in place for 2020.

The 17th game would also be played out-of-market in order to keep the balance of eight home and eight away games for each team.

At this time, no date is set for a vote for the 32 player reps. Even if they reject it, the union is expected to bring the plan to the entire membership.

Under the new CBA, the regular season would expand to 17 games within the next few years.

The proposed terms of the deal, which would run through 2030, are not being made public.

"No deal is finalized until the players vote", NFLPA president Eric Winston wrote on Twitter.

However, the union has opposed adding to the regular season and would probably insist on expanding rosters in exchange.

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Under the current format, six teams make the playoffs from the NFC and AFC, and the top two seeds from each conference receive a first-round bye. Several owners are strongly in favor of doing so regardless of the CBA status.

Under the proposed changes, three wild-card games would be played Saturday and three more Sunday on the opening weekend of the playoffs.

But the league has promised the union to cap the number of worldwide games and that there would not be a full week of such contests.

Of course, that's not what transpired for the Steelers in 2019 - their season ended in Week 17 in Baltimore - but it's a scenario that would have happened if the proposed expanded playoff schedule had been on the books. Training camp tweaks include limiting padded practices from 28 to 16, and adding more days off to training camp while reducing joint practices from eight to five. Yet, according to the sentiments expressed by Richard Sherman nearly a month ago, the players' pushback against the idea of a 17-game schedule is rooted deeper than compensation.

The additional game for each club would be played out-of-market, the sources said, with a heavy emphasis on key global locales like the United Kingdom (London and Ireland, in particular), Germany, Mexico and Brazil. There would be more flexibility for protecting practice squad players from becoming free agents.

Other inclusions on the potential new CBA include ending suspensions for positive marijuana tests, and increasing pensions for retired and active players.