WASHINGTON, D.C.–Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV released this statement urging the NFL and players to temporarily extend the current collective bargaining agreement (CBA)–and buy more time for negotiations:
“A lockout is completely unnecessary. It has the potential to harm not just the players, the league and the fans, but all the Americans whose livelihoods depend on a football season. We’re talking about thousands of jobs at stake: from jobs at concession and merchandise stands to hotel and retail sector jobs.
“Why should the workers who depend on these jobs pay the price of a bitter dispute between wealthy players and wealthier owners?
“I urge the NFL and the players to extend the deadline for their talks. It’s not a heavy lift. Both sides should be able to agree on at least this. Keep talking. Take a time-out, and let cooler heads prevail. Then return to the table for negotiations and come to a resolution to break this impasse.
“I’m still disappointed that the league won’t simply open up its books so the players can get a clear picture of the finances of the entire NFL. Transparency is always a good thing and corporate secrecy should not trump cooperation.”