According to the National Football League, the 2020 NFL Draft will go ahead as scheduled from 23-25 April. The reason given is that the league had successfully put the lockout, which lasted for almost three months, behind it. Despite this, there is no reason for NFL owners to be too confident.
As soon as the union leadership gives the green light to the scheduled action, the current situation will have to be sorted out. It is probable that the lockout could extend well into June. This means that the NFL draft will not take place at all in the period leading up to the start of the new season.
The proposed date for the draft was fixed when the owners agreed to call off the strike. However, they made a mistake and now realize they should not have agreed to this date. Instead, they should have agreed to the original date – after the end of the regular season.
This is because there are still about three months left until the end of the regular season and some owners think they can beat the suspension and still have the draft. If this happens, then a lot of time will be lost during the course of the season. It would mean that if one owner wants to draft a particular player, he would have to do so the last week of May and wait for the final weekend of the regular season.
The owners will not lose anything by holding the draft. They will have to pay players for the services they have rendered to their teams during the suspended period. They will also have to determine the futures of several other players who will miss the entire season.
The owners will also have to decide whether or not to make a substitute draft. This can be done by simply making a formal request to the NFL commissioner. On the basis of the information provided, the commissioner will make a decision on whether or not the owners have the right to a substitute draft.
Once the commissioner has confirmed the request, the league offices will make a list of the names. The owners can either opt to make a substitute draft or not. After all, the league office may be moving fast but it is not infallible.
These negotiations will continue till a deal is reached between the owners and the team owners. It will become more difficult to find a replacement for injured players once the season begins. There are hundreds of former NFL players who are in good shape and will be ready to play if called upon.
The owners have been offered two things – one is to continue with the suspended period and the other is to call off the strike. However, this does not mean that they will agree to everything the union leadership wants. Owners will be trying to convince the NFLPA leadership to agree to something rather than nothing.
If the owners cannot get anything out of the negotiations with the players, then they will surely see a lot of bad blood between the two sides. Players can very well ask the NFL players to strike for the rest of the season. If the owners are not willing to make any compromise, then players might want to seek protection from the courts.
If the owners do not listen to the players and keep pushing for no compromise, then it will be easier for the players to find people to blame for the lockout. The latest allegations against the owners by former player turned coach Jim Mora, who is currently serving a prison sentence, can be taken as a blatant warning to the NFL owners. who want to drag on with the lockout?
The players will certainly not accept such conditions. Therefore, the clock is ticking on the league owners and the players cannot afford to lose out just because of a few of them. people.