The Chicago Bears are remaining hopeful and optimistic when it comes to the 2011 NFL season. The president and CEO of the Bears, Ted Phillips, talked about his feelings regarding the current dispute between the players and owners with senior writer for Chicago, Larry Mayer upon his return from the owners meeting.
Phillips and the Bears as an organization have remained positive about the labor problems. They haven’t put a lot of people on suspensions for any club functions. The Bears’ organization has proceeded as if everything will be “fine.”
Larry Mayer asked Phillips if, after returning from the owners meeting he remained optimistic. Phillips advised that he did remain optimistic not because of any breaking news rather his faith in the “greatness” on both sides of the table.
Of course the problem is there are no sides of any table.
The players decertified, meaning they disbanded their union. Then they (led by Tom Brady and Drew Brees) filed an antitrust lawsuit saying the owners, who then locked them out, could not legally lock them out. The owners have since filed their own lawsuit saying the players don’t have a leg to stand on.
I have argued the commissioner and the owners, having made offers to get back to the table, are more earnest than the players and I cannot figure out why.
Phillips also commented on the mood of the owners. He said it was “business-like” which is what I would expect it to be. Further he said the antitrust suit was anything but helpful in that it simply delayed necessary talks.
Phillips also indicated he did not think regular season games would be canceled.
An important topic to Bears’ fans was not overlooked by Larry Mayer or Ted Phillips. As with most Bears’ fans, Phillips felt that changing the kickoff line to the 35-yard-line from the 30-yard-line had a lot more to do with punishing and handicapping teams like the Bears who have return men like Devin Hester and good Special Teams, than preventing concussions. There are many better ways to do that.
Phillips seemed to think that that after a couple of years they may change the line back to the 30-yard-line.
I’m going to guess it will happen the year after Devin Hester retires.
Chicago Bears’ Website, Larry Mayer, “Phillips weighs in on labor situation, other key issues”
Associated Content from Yahoo Website, Gary Davis, “NFL Owners Move Kickoff to 35-Yard-Line: Is It New “Devin Hester Rule?”