A major decision is about to be voted on by the NFL players association that could have huge implications on the game if passed. The NFL is proposing a new Collective Bargaining Agreement that would change many factors throughout the game.
If the players agree on the proposal, the changes would go into effect immediately, as the owners of the franchises have already given the green light on the proposal.
The vote is expected to take place within the next couple of weeks. Multiple big-name players such as Aaron Rodgers, Richard Sherman, and J.J. Watt have expressed their problems with the proposal.
But what exactly would change in the game if the proposal is passed?
Well for starters, the NFL would extend the regular-season from 16 games to 17 games. Which may not seem like a big change, but to the players it is. Another factor in that change would be which teams get an extra home or road game?
The result of an extra regular-season game added to the schedule would be a shortened preseason. Likely one to two games less. Players have expressed their dislike of a four-game preseason due to injuries that players suffer during those third and fourth games.
Potentially the biggest change would be coming to the playoff format. Currently, 12 teams make the playoffs, with the top two teams in each conference getting a bye week to start the postseason. Under the new format, 14 teams will make the playoffs, with each conference adding a third wild card team.
This would give rebuilding teams a higher chance of making the postseason, to potentially make a cinderella story run to the Super Bowl.
A change that would come on a much more smaller scale, would be the expansion of the roster from 53 to 55 players. But a stipulation to this change would be that NFL teams wouldn’t have to pay any of the players their game check, for the extra game in week 17. This change did not fly over well for many of the players.
The final rule change that would come into effect would be a salary-cap increase for teams. This can potentially go a long way for teams trying to sign big money players.
If the proposed CBA is approved, it will be in effect until 2030, running a ten-year span before another vote takes place. Although this change is unlikely to be agreed upon by the players, If this is agreed upon, it will affect NFL Free agency and salary cap regulations immediately.
The NFL new league year begins on March 18. The NFLPA will be placing their votes in the coming days.
Only time will tell if they will agree upon these potential major rule changes.