The New York Jets star wide receiver Brandon Marshall already has a job as a football analyst for Showtime's Inside the NFL despite still being a very productive player in the NFL. He is not shy about giving his opinion about the league or players even though he is still active, and he already is calling out for contract changes in the next Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NFL and the NFLPA.
The main points that he has brought up is that he believes that the NFL needs to have fully guaranteed contracts like the NBA and MLB do, and he does not believe that the Franchise Tag should exist. These are going to be too incredibly heated battle points for the next CBA, neither one of those issues are things the owners are going to agree to very easily.
"I think it would be the biggest fight we've ever had to get that done," Marshall said in an interview with the New York Daily News when talking about wanting fully guaranteed contracts in the next CBA. He is absolutely right on that too, it would be one of the nastier CBA negotiations we have seen if players were willing to fight for what the NBA and MLB already have.
With the guaranteed contracts being one huge fight, the franchise tag is another equally large fight to try and remove from the next CBA. The owners love the tag, they get to keep their best players against their will while the player has to risk serious injury on a one year deal instead of getting the security of a long term contract. They also likely have earned a long term contract by excellent play to even be a candidate to use the franchise tag on in the first place.
"It's one of those things that I'm going to stand on the table for when it's time to get back at the table," Brandon Marshall said about the tag. "I think it's bad business. There should never be a time — whether it's sports or it's business — where one side has all the risk. We know the risks that come with playing football. So if a guy has no guaranteed money, he holds all the risk. ... We're talking about longevity. We're talking about security."
The thing that Marshall isn't exactly taking into account while promising to advocate loudly for these things is that the current CBA does not run out until 2020. Marshall is already 32 years old, even though he is still very productive it is very fair to question whether he will still even be a player by then.
Still, somebody needs to bring these issues to the forefront for the NFLPA to battle for in the next CBA and Marshall is happy to call for the attention it deserves while he still can. There are very few people out there who don't think NFL players should have the same guaranteed contracts that their NBA and MLB brethren already have, especially when considering they play the most dangerous and physically demanding sport out of all three major leagues.
The franchise tag will be an even more debated topic with even fans being split on it, after all they love that their best players can't always just leave when their contract is up. You can't deny the frustration one would feel being forced to stay somewhere they don't want to be though and they do take a huge risk playing on one year deals instead of long term and more lucrative contracts.
One thing is for sure, the next CBA between the NFL and the NFLPA is already looking like it will be a very heated battle. With these issues already coming up 4 years before negotiations even start is also a scary thing in a way, because if the players truly start to feel discontented about this they could hold a strike. Let's all hope that doesn't happen.
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