Packers quarterback and player rep Aaron Rodgers is the latest NFL star to chime in on the disagreement between players and owners on the proposed collective bargaining agreement.
“I voted no last night. 16 games to me, was never something to be negotiated,” Rodgers wrote in a statement Wednesday on Twitter. “The owners made it clear that the 17th game is about paying for the ‘added’ benefits and had nothing to do with positive feedback received about any extra risks involved with the added regular season game.”
If the NFL’s stars are at all indicative of the rest of the players, the recently proposed CBA might be in trouble.
Owners voted to approve the proposed version — though not unanimously — last week, hoping to have the new deal in place by March 18, the beginning of the league’s new year. The CBA includes a 17-game season, shortened preseason, upgraded pensions and a higher percentage of revenues for players.
The NFLPA board voted by a slim margin to send it to players, with a simple majority vote among players needed to make it official.
Big-name players already have begun to speak out. Texans linebacker J.J. Watt was among the first, tweeting “Hard no” shortly after the CBA was passed to the players.
Richard Sherman, the 49ers cornerback, quoted Rodgers’ tweet, adding: “Health and Wellness of our men is always the most important aspect. There is no price you can put on that and that is why I Voted No. I respect the Men that have been part of this discussion and stood up for their locker rooms.”
Rodgers and Sherman are hardly alone in shooting down the proposal. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson pointed to the players’ power in MLB and NBA as a reason to vote no.
“We should not rush the next 10 years for today’s satisfaction,” he wrote.
“I vote no,” Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey — twin of Dolphins center and player rep Mike Pouncey — said in an Instagram video. “F–k that s–t. Our NFLPA, the dudes at the top, the leaders … They ain’t looking out for the best for the players.”