NFLPA is ready to decertify on Friday

National Football League Players’ Association’s (NFLPA) Executive Director DeMaurice Smith speaks to the media as he arrives to continue negotiations between the National Football League (NFL) and NFLPA in Washington March 11, 2011. The parties were still negotiating a range of sticking points, including how to divide more than $9 billion in annual revenues, but the players’ union insist one issue, the NFL’s proposal to add two more games to the regular season, was off the table. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts (UNITED STATES – Tags: EMPLOYMENT BUSINESS SPORT FOOTBALL)

The current CBA deadline may be set for 11:59PM ET on Friday but for the NFL and NFLPA to avoid a lockout, the two sides will have to come to an agreement much sooner than that.

That’s because the deadline for the players to decertify is approximately 5:00PM ET, or seven hours before the CBA deadline is set. And the NFLPA has already filed the paperwork to take the necessary actions once that deadline hits. In essence, the two sides will either have to agree on a new CBA (or at the very least, another extension), or prepare for a lockout/decertification.

The hiccup in talks still appears to be the owners’ unwillingness to show the players audited financial statements for every team. The owners did open up their books earlier this week, but the players want more intricate details. In the eyes of the union, it’s not enough for the owners to ask the players to take a paycut and only provide overall yearly numbers. The NFLPA want more.

The players have already won a couple of battles but the war is far from over. U.S. Eighth District Court Judge David S. Doty’s ruling that the owners can’t use the annual TV revenue to financially support a lockout was a big win for the players. And if they decertify, they would be heading back to court with Doty, who has sided more with the them than the owners when it’s come to past labor transgressions.

But while the players would have an alley in Doty, avoiding him is still the goal. Coming to an agreement with the owners so that there’s a season next year is what everyone (from the NFLPA to the fans) wants in the end. If they decertify, then the divide between them and the owners because much bigger than it already is, which is only fueling the problem.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

Related Posts