Lockout has turned into limbo for NFL players and owners, and everyone is stuck there for the time being.
“It drives me insane, that’s what it does,” said Chicago rookie J’Marcus Webb, who was told he and a handful of other Bears couldn’t use the team’s weight room Tuesday. “I’m trying to eat healthy and work out, do my job and right now I’m just stuck at home working out and watching cartoons all day.
“What’s up with that? Let me get back to what I do best.”
That could take a while. The 2011 season, and the business between 32 teams and their thousands of anxious players, is in a holding pattern. With more court fights and appeals expected, the NFL said it needed “a few days to sort this out” and provide some rules for everyone to follow.
“We are in the process of determining throughout the league as to just how we’ll proceed and when we’ll open the new year across the league, the new football year,” Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. “We have not done that.”
At least the draft will be held this week, even if free agency and personnel swaps are up in the air.
In one of the oddest days in NFL history, players showed up at their team headquarters and most were told that they were welcome to come inside as long as they didn’t participate in any sort of “football activities.”
Most left in a matter of minutes with more questions than answers about where the $9 billion business is headed. And there was no consistency _ some teams allowed players to work out (Giants) while others turned them away altogether (Bills).
No rules, not yet. Just uncertainty.
In a question-and-answer memo distributed by the NFLPA and obtained by The Associated Press, free agents were told they can contact teams and shop their services, putting pressure on the NFL to set up a free agency system that complies with antitrust laws.
The document also told players that teams are responsible for care of any football-related injury, meaning it’s “safer for players to work out on club property.”
U.S. District Judge Susan Richard Nelson lifted the 45-day lockout late Monday, but that did nothing to clear this up. The NFL asked her to put her order on hold, and she agreed to weigh the request after the players’ response is filed Wednesday.
That means the questions will linger at least another day and if the NFL loses again, it will place its hopes with the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis.
“What we need to do is let the dust settle for a day or two and see if the stay is put in place, and then we’ll all know more and go from there,” Pash said.View Entire Story
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