Friday, March 5, 2010

It's Suddenly the 80's Again!

If anyone remembers the NFL in the 80's they will remember long periods of the same few teams going to the Super Bowl while other teams pretty much stayed at the bottom scrambling for scraps the other teams let fall off the table.

Well, it looks like those times are back.  The salary caps that have been imposed on the NFL since the early 90's are gone.  This should usher in a new dynastic era where teams like the Dallas Cowboys, who have plenty of money to throw around, will be able to buy any player they want to ensure they make it to the Super Bowl year after year.  Meanwhile teams like the Detroit Lions, and the Cincinnatti Bengals will struggle with the meager earnings these teams make from year to year, because of their poor performance from year to year, it will be harder and harder for them to build a competitive team.

Sure, many people throughout the NFL may say that there will not be an immediate effect, but when you consider owners like Jerry Jones and Al Davis who will not sneeze at the possibility of shelling out the big bucks if they can bring some major players to their teams, you have the possibility of some new dynasties developing.

With the same token you will have owners like Mike Brown who, historically, has not had that great a track record putting together winning teams.  Even with profit sharing and the salary caps.

Hopefully, the owners will not start signing players with astronomical contracts while at the same time raising ticket prices to pay for them.  This will alienate the fans and ultimately drive attendance down, even at the big venues like the new Dallas Cowboy stadium.

Part of the excitement of watching football from year to year is seeing different teams make a run for the big prize.  Sure we all want "our team" to go every year, but that would be boring.  The league would no longer be competitive, and thus no longer entertaining.  We would end up just tuning in at half time during the Super Bowl to see who the big act is.

Case in point is the New Orleans Saints.  This year is the first time since they became a franchise that they made it to, and won, the Super Bowl.  Who is to say that would have happened without a salary cap?  Sure there were plenty of other factors involved, but one of those is the fact that every team had a limit they had to work with.

Many people in the league don't think that another salary cap will happen any time soon.  This would involve the players union and the owners negotiating a new CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement).  However, with the salary cap being gone, so is the "floor", which means teams can pretty much pay as little as the feel they need to in order to keep players on the roster instead of cutting them lose.  This may prompt "underpaid" players to push for a new CBA.

We shall see.  Needless to say, this upcoming season will be interesting to say the least.

No comments:

Post a Comment