In talking with NFL Network’s Rich Eisen about the CBA negotiations with the Players’ Association, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell struck a conciliatory tone, saying the sides need to work harder to reach an accord.
“The real core message here is that we all want to get a fair agreement, for the players, for the owners, to allow the game to continue to grow,” said Goodell. “There are conversations going on, that’s a positive step. But we’re all frustrated there’s not more progress.”
As for next season, Goodell admitted it will most likely be uncapped, “It’s looking virtually certain we’ll get to that point.”
Goodell also addressed a pair of key Pro Bowl issues. He responded to concerns raised by Colts president Bill Polian earlier in the week that separating Indianapolis’ Pro Bowl players from the rest of the team this weekend was ‘stupid’ and a ‘disruption’.
Goodell said the idea to bring the Super Bowl teams’ Pro Bowlers to be introduced with their all-star teammates came from the players.
“The reason the players are here, is because the players asked to be here. When we went through the process of deciding about moving the Pro Bowl, the players said we’d like to be there, and be honored with our (Pro Bowl) teammates, and so we’d like the Super Bowl players to come in early,” revealed Goodell. “So we’re responding exactly to what the players wanted by having them here.”
Goodell reiterated that even with the Pro Bowl returning to Hawaii for the next two seasons, the league may still hold the event the week prior to the Super Bowl.
“We have the option to do that, and that’s one of the things we want to analyze,” said Goodell.