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Old 01-21-2011, 06:56 PM   #1
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Default Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor nego

Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor negotiations
January 21, 2011 | 1:36 pm
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/spor...otiations.html

Dan Rooney, chairman of the Pittsburgh Steelers, isn’t directly involved in negotiations between NFL owners and players, but he’s concerned about the lack of progress between the sides and where that could lead.

“We should have a deal,” Rooney said Friday, speaking at Steelers headquarters to three reporters who cover the league on a national basis. “We should not let the disruption of next season happen because of a lockout, a strike, or whatever… It’s in everybody’s best interest to get a deal. The players, of course, want to play, and that’s what should happen.

“The games this year couldn’t be better. The ratings are high? So why would you step back?”

However, Rooney, who now serves as U.S. Ambassador to Ireland, said owners are united in their determination to scrap the current collective-bargaining agreement, which expires in March.

“Status quo is not an option,” he said. “I just believe that [the opposing sides] could work out an agreement. There are points that could make this deal better for everyone.”

Rooney declined to address specifics of the talks, saying he wanted to leave those to the negotiators, but he expressed frustration at the glacial pace of the process.

His were the strongest-worded remarks on the issue from a team owner in months.

“I just think the negotiators should get it together and start doing what they should do, and get a deal,” he said, adding, “If they sit down and work things out, I think they could have a deal rather quickly.”

Rooney said the CBA over the years has gotten “a little too rich on one side” –- meaning the players’ side -– and indicated an agreement might have been reached sooner but for the 2008 death of Gene Upshaw, the former executive director of the NFL Players Assn.

“I think if Gene Upshaw were here, he’s someone I could talk to about this,” he said. “He’s someone who was for the game at all the time.”

Asked whether the owners’ lack of familiarity with current union head DeMaurice Smith has led to “a distrust” that’s complicating negotiations, Rooney said: “I don’t know the personalities. There is maybe distrust. Maybe dislike is a better word. But that’s beyond. You have a situation like this, you’ve got to get a deal. You’ve got to forget personalities.”

Rooney, whose late father, Art, founded the Steelers in 1933, has in past negotiations been a bridge between owners and players, and has long been regarded as an owner especially sympathetic to the interests of the players. His son, Art Rooney II, now runs the franchise on a day-to-day basis.

Unlike many owners, the elder Rooney is staunchly against expanding the regular season to 18 games, which is an issue in the current negotiations. Many players feel that would be too punishing to their bodies and would significantly shorten their careers.

“I would rather not get the money” than expand the regular season, Rooney said.

“You have a system that works, so why add them?” he said. “Now the people usually say, 'The preseason doesn’t work.’ Well, look at the preseason as the preseason and try to work that out. Don’t say you’re going to start messing with the full system.”

Asked whether he’d be in favor of playing preseason games with discounted ticket costs, as opposed to the current full-price tickets, Rooney said: “It’s bad for me to say that because they do pay it here, with no complaints. We sell out preseason games. The Steeler nation, they’re wild. They like to see the preseason games to see these kids play and how they’re going to be, start guessing who’s good.”

Rooney said he was similarly against the expansion of the regular season from 14 to 16 games in 1978.

“That worked out fine,” he said. “But there is a limit.”

-- Sam Farmer, reporting from Pittsburgh
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Old 01-21-2011, 07:55 PM   #2
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

League needs a lockout to get that (bleep) out of there. The guy is ruining everything. He can't even set up overtime rules like a normal freakin person. If it meant losing 2011-12 season to get Goodell out, I would go with it. I hope the Union leader can set it up like that. The owners already have made their money, which makes them think they got all the leverage. Stand Pat, I think its bullcrap because they would ruin the game for the future.
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:43 PM   #3
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

I'd like to see an 18 game season. It's a reasonable and attractive settlement. NFL football until almost March.
Eliminate the paractice squad and put those guys on the roster to help deal with injury issues.
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Old 01-22-2011, 12:18 AM   #4
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

I don't want an 18 game season. I don't want to see watered down football. Preseason games are relatively low impact so their effect on the players health is minimal. Plus the people that won't play during the season receive most of the playing time.
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Old 01-22-2011, 12:37 AM   #5
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

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I'd like to see an 18 game season. It's a reasonable and attractive settlement. NFL football until almost March.
Eliminate the paractice squad and put those guys on the roster to help deal with injury issues.
Why do you always say the dumbest things? You always complain about how bad we are but somehow you want to see them play for 18 games.
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:10 AM   #6
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

-dropping 2 pre-season kiddie games and substituting them with regular games (that "count") -from a fans perspective is great, obviously.
Somethin tells me, the NFL might be adding a couple more new franchises/teams again ?-just a hunch.

I actually like the idea of subbing 2 of those 4 pre-season games., but then again, I also want those goal-posts brought in 2-yards so that atleast the "hard-fought"/"crucial" games won't be determined by just "one" dandelion-punter(aka ex-soccer-player) from the 40-50+ yard-line. I mean comon !
I'd rather see teams "earn" those battles by atleast driving up to the other guys 20+ yard-line or so...

:)
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Old 01-22-2011, 02:43 PM   #7
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

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Why do you always say the dumbest things? You always complain about how bad we are but somehow you want to see them play for 18 games.

An intelligent arguement against an 18 game season would be nice to hear.
Look at this weeks playoff games. How many guys are out due to injury. one? two?
The talent pool is out there. Every year coachs have to make hard and often difficult and heart wrenching roster cuts.
I'm sure that right now the Steelers wish that they had a couple more roster spots available for a couple more offenseive linemen.
Theres tons of LB's and DB's on the street who can play in this league.
Plenty of DL on the street too.

If you have an 18 game season and create 6 more roster spots, and use the spots for 2 extra RB, 2 extra OL, an extra DB, and an extra DL, you can play the 18 and not have to suffer physically. Every year at final cutdown, marginal guys are cut. they all can play in this league.
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Old 01-22-2011, 02:59 PM   #8
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

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Originally Posted by wutchy View Post
An intelligent arguement against an 18 game season would be nice to hear.
Look at this weeks playoff games. How many guys are out due to injury. one? two?
The talent pool is out there. Every year coachs have to make hard and often difficult and heart wrenching roster cuts.
I'm sure that right now the Steelers wish that they had a couple more roster spots available for a couple more offenseive linemen.
Theres tons of LB's and DB's on the street who can play in this league.
Plenty of DL on the street too.

If you have an 18 game season and create 6 more roster spots, and use the spots for 2 extra RB, 2 extra OL, an extra DB, and an extra DL, you can play the 18 and not have to suffer physically. Every year at final cutdown, marginal guys are cut. they all can play in this league.
There are few merits to this argument , however, 18 games is NOT a good idea. It's only about money in the owners pockets, your best players, which are the ones that are getting injured, have more chance for injury , because of the extra games that shortens careers. I would rather them keep the 16 game schedule and increase the rosters , especially for game days. Increase roster to 55 and activate 51 for games with the 3rd QB not counting against the active players list.
The NFL is concerned about player safety yet want to add games, that is hypocritical.

BTW was Heinz field loud enough for you last week?

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Old 01-22-2011, 03:15 PM   #9
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

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An intelligent arguement against an 18 game season would be nice to hear.
Look at this weeks playoff games. How many guys are out due to injury. one? two?
Try again, maybe one or two per team. Did you happen to miss the way we lost half of our Oline & Dline this season to injuries? What do you think would happen if we tacked on another two more games, just to get to the postseason? By the time the playoffs rolled around, we will be watching the Steelers'practice squad vs the Jets'practice squad.

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The talent pool is out there. Every year coachs have to make hard and often difficult and heart wrenching roster cuts.
And as a consequence, we have guys like Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jason Campbell as starting NFL QBs, and all season long we have been complaining about how there are really only two or three descent teams in the NFL and then 25 "other" teams have been stinking the joint up.

This season has featured some of the worst teams I have seen in the NFL for quite some time. And the thinner you spread the talent out, the more 4-12 teams there will be in the league, and the more 7-9 teams winning their divisions....

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I'm sure that right now the Steelers wish that they had a couple more roster spots available for a couple more offenseive linemen.
Adding two more games does not guarantee additional roster spots. It is only a proposal to add more roster spots if they expand the season to 18 games, it is not in writing yet.

But again, how does adding roster spots increase the quality of the game? Even if we had two more roster spots on the Steelers right now, who is out there that we could sign that would make a difference? Would having those extra spots mean much if you have to fill them with the likes of Tony Hills or Ryan McBean?

Adding 2 more games per season will shorten the shelf life of fan favorites like Hines Ward too. For example, if you play in the NFL for 10 seasons (an eternity for most NFL players), that is 20 more games that you had to play in. That is a whole extra season's worth of play and then some. Or, at the very least, they will be garbage games, with playoff seedings already determined and teams will get by the added wear and tear but just playing their backups. Is that what you want to see too?

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Theres tons of LB's and DB's on the street who can play in this league.
Plenty of DL on the street too.
And they aren't right now for a reason-- they weren't good enough. Adding 2 more games is not going to magically cause them to elevate THEIR game, only cause us to lower our standards to find their play acceptable at the NFL level.

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Old 01-22-2011, 03:20 PM   #10
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Default Re: Pittsburgh Steelers' Dan Rooney is concerned about lack of progress in NFL labor

Final cuts isn't about being "good enough", its almost always about "roster spots".
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