I teared up a little bit when I saw the news.
The vote was unanimous. All 32 team representatives speaking for 1,900 members of the NFL Players Association voted to accept the 10 year deal presented to them by the NFL Owners.
This lockout had been going on since March - the longest in NFL history and the first NFL work stoppage in 24 years. Now, I won't go into how old I am, but I can tell you that while I was watching football back then, I certainly wasn't aware of the goings on of the players union. I was far more concerned about what Duran Duran and Bon Jovi were doing and as far as football went as long as the Bucs were winning I was happy.
Of course Tampa Bay didn't win many football games back then. I guess some things haven't changed that much. The Bucs are still in rough shape and I've seen both Bon Jovi and Duran Duran live this year, but other things have changed a lot! Now I run a sports blog and play in six or seven (fine, ten) fantasy football leagues every year and I find myself caring deeply about player labor issues.
Being a grown up is so weird.
The short story is that the players and the owners both thought they were entitled to more money and 4 1/2 months later they came to an agreement where nobody got exactly what they wanted but everyone could live with just in time to get all of their paperwork straightened out before the NFL season starts on September 8th.
Will the players be in shape by then? Will the rookies have time to learn the plays? Is there going to be a regular pre-season?
I really am mostly asking about the pre-season thing because the preseason schedule has mysteriously disappeared from the NFL website and I was going to try to score tickets to the Redskins hosting my beloved Buccaneers now that I know there will in fact be football.
You know what? I can live without the preseason. For now I will just be happy there will be a regular season and start worrying about free agency and salary caps and making my draft charts for fantasy football. I guess I can also start grumbling about the rumors that Brett Favre and Tiki Barber are both trying to come out of retirement.
Did you think I was kidding about the tears? I wasn't. I could stay mad at them for making me suffer all summer long. I am still disappointed at the levels of greed displayed by both sides but I would still rather watch a football game than a sitcom. I still get amped up when I hear the Monday Night Football song.
I still love the NFL.
Credit Image: © TJ Root/Southcreek Global/ZUMApress.com
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