We began the 2011 offseason waiting for a new CBA to be signed. That wait was in vain. We now await the light bulbs flickering on in the concussed brains of the NFL rank and file players. A vain wait here would leave us with no 2011 NFL season.
The biggest obstacle to the aforementioned glimmering moment is the players’ union leadership. Drew Bees is one of the more prominent members, and a supposedly bright fellow, yet he remarked this week that he had no idea when the lockout would end. As though this event was out of his hands.
Perhaps this scribe is inordinately brilliant and, like Outsider readers, utterly unaware of it, but ending the lockout seems pretty simple. Sign a new CBA. What am I missing?
As a union leader, Brees should feel some sort of control over when this CBA signing will occur, or at least have some inkling or input. If he doesn’t have any control, input, or inkling, then who does? Brees is on the executive committee for the NFLPA, as well as players Domonique Foxworth, Mike Vrabel, Brian Dawkins, Jeff Saturday, Tony Richardson, Kevin Carter, and retired players Keenan McCardell, Mark Bruener, and Donovin Darius. The 49ers’ union rep is Takeo Spikes, even though he is not currently on the team.
What do these union reps do? Are they just glorified messenger boys ferrying info back and forth from team members to the union throne, which currently seems to be nothing but a den of iniquity populated by lawyers?
Maybe this comment was Brees’ way of saying he didn’t know how long it would take for players to get a clue and insist on a signing, and the lockout would last until such clue discovery occurred. Which would be when a majority of the players had reached in their pockets to purchase some gilded accessories and discovered lint where oncet had resided hundred dollar bills by the wadfull.
Which view to adopt? Brees as dunce or Brees as coy hintologist?
Most likely neither. Most likely, Brees is unwittingly admitting that the players have placed all power in the hands of DeMaurice Smith and they have no idea what this clown is going to do or when. At the moment, DS is parading around inventing reality rather than facing it.
DS is also evolving himself from an obscure Washington lawyer into a household word in American sports, an ego based tidbit that should not be overlooked. Perhaps he’s aware that the stage is now his and he can strut around on it until mid-July without causing serious harm to the 2011 NFL season. If he plays his cards right, he could even position himself to be viewed as the Man Who Saved Football, by helping to hammer out a new CBA at the eleventh hour. You can’t save football if you don’t first make sure it’s in peril.
In the meantime, 49er fans will have to make do with their own Smith foursome. We have a Reggie, an Aldon, a Justin, and most prominently, The Alex. The unsung, underachieving, unloved, unpopular, unsigned, unbelievable Smithero Uno. Our blogworld unhero. Next week, we’ll begin a twenty-two part docudrama on The Smith From Snowy Utah. Here’s a sneak preview:
“As his mother screamed and pushed, the fetal, as yet unnamed Alex, pondered his unhurried entrance into the unknown world of Smithmanity . . .”