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NFL’s opt-out offer includes $150,000 advance on 2021 salary

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Plus “limited ability to use the threat of an opt-out as leverage for a new contract.”

NFL Lockout Looms As Negotiations Reach Final Day Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Pro Football talk obtained the NFL’s most recent proposal to the NFLPA, which included players’ ability not to play. The deadline for players to make that decision is August 1, at 2:00 p.m. PT. A written notice “must be received” by the team before that moment. Once the team has received said notice from a player, the opt-out becomes irrevocable. Wow. So, a player who opts out cannot play at all during 2020.

Here is how a players contract will work if they choose to opt-out:

A player who opts out will have his contract toll for a full year. He will not receive his base salary or any other payments scheduled to be earned after the date of the opt-out, and he will not earn a benefit credit or an accrued season. In 2021, his contract will be reinstated. If he “timely reports for all required activities” in 2021, the opt-out will not become a breach of his 2020 contract, which “will not subject him to discipline or forfeiture, will not void any bonuses or guarantees or have any other adverse consequences beyond those set forth herein.”

There is This doesn’t seem like it’s going to end well. I read this as “no pay, no play,” essentially. There haven’t been any agreements on the above proposal yet, but I’d be surprised if we see any bigger names opt-out if this becomes final. I wonder if the NFL refuses to budge since the players already signed the CBA, and many owners feel like the players came out ahead in the latest CBA.

Raheem Mostert and George Kittle are under contract for a couple of more seasons. I wonder, under this hypothetical opt-out proposal, if that would lead to the San Francisco 49ers paying those two, or any other valuable player threatening to hold out as they’d likely miss the entire season.

There have been a few discussions on whether or not the NFL will carry 90-man rosters heading into training camp, or if that number will fall to 75 or 80. Let’s say you’re an undrafted free agent that has a long shot at making a roster. Do you go against everything you’ve fought for to get here, take the $150,000 and call it a day? I saw PFT throw out that proposal. Football players don’t think like that, not the ones that have worked this hard, anyway. Also, general managers will see that you found a loophole and probably won’t be as willing to give you another chance next training camp.