NFLPA board delays vote on owners’ collective bargaining agreement proposal

Feb. 21 (UPI) — The NFL Players Association’s board of player representatives declined to vote on the new collective bargaining agreement proposal, the players union announced Friday.

According to a statement released by the NFLPA, the union wants to have additional discussions with NFL owners on key details of the proposal before taking a vote.

“Today, the NFLPA Board of Player Representatives did not take a vote on the principal terms of the proposed new collective bargaining agreement,” the statement said. “Our player leadership looks forward to meeting with NFL management again next week before the Board takes a vote shortly after.”

League sources told ESPN and NFL Media on Friday that the league has agreed to meet with the NFLPA on Tuesday at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. It’s unclear whether that meeting will result in further negotiations about terms of the proposal.

The NFLPA board of player reps then plans to vote either Tuesday night or Wednesday morning, with the full vote waiting until after the result of the board’s vote on a recommendation. According to ESPN, some owners would not be receptive to further discussion on the CBA proposal.

The turn of events comes only a day after NFL owners accepted the terms of the new CBA proposal, with more than the required three-fourths of the owners voting to ratify it.

According to an NFLPA memo obtained by ESPN and NFL Media, some of the key terms included in the proposal are the elimination of any game suspensions for positive marijuana tests, reduction in the number of players tested for marijuana, “gambling definitions” that ensure players receive a portion of gambling revenue and alterations to training camp.

The proposal includes a game-day roster increase from 46 players to 48, with overall roster sizes jumping from 53 to 55, according to ESPN. NFL teams would also be permitted to bring back three players from injured reserve each season, and practice squads would expand from the 10 players last season.

The proposed CBA also would allow the NFL to expand the regular season from 16 games to 17 at some point in the next four years, according to ESPN. Under the new proposal, the playoff field would expand to 14 teams starting in 2020, and the preseason would eventually be shortened to three games instead of four.