NFLPA Spokesman George Atallah on the NFL replacement refs
Wed, 19 Sep 2012|
Here to talk more about the NFL replacement officials that we've been hearing so much about and seeing so much of obviously. Is NFL PA is Georgia college George thanks for being here. First of all what is the number one issue keeping their regular. Officials off of the field. Unfortunately comes down to money and pensions and I think the league made a concerted effort to lock the officials out because they wanted to eliminate the pension plan. And they wanted to make sure that the officials took less money than they currently make those are always two things that the league in management. Believe that they can extract hence why they blocked the officials out that's why they locked the players out. Just over a year ago so I think you look at this case and can you see they've literally abandoned. Health and safety issues in favor of trying to gain leverage over one party in negotiations. Well this past weekend I mean we saw so many instances of skirmishes after the play. I'm obviously players have been extremely frustrated it's seems like both on and off the field. I mean is that I guess a normal human nature reaction. It's not because these are not normal circumstances again when you look at. The replacements on the field it's not so much about their performance. It's about the league's decision to hand over the keys to a group of people. That are not as well experienced that don't are not equipped to handle certain health and safety issues on the field and players are frustrated. Coaches are frustrated as well but they've just been given a gag order by a certain group of people zone. You know we've heard from coaches we've heard from players current and former players hall of fame players have weighed in on this issue. Take cuts to the health and safety of our players but also to the integrity of the game. What's it gonna take for these two ties to sit down and on even talking about sitting down again. Come a lock out is by definition. A decision that's made by management to extract concessions and to gain leverage over the workforce. And so you hear a lot of this conversation about come back to the negotiating table the owners have to step and the owners have to. Make a concerted effort to make a reasonable offer and let's get these games officiated the way they're supposed to. Do you think the fans are tired of walk -- -- mean we had obviously the NFL lockout for the NBA lockout last year. Now we have the officials locked out and we have the NHL locked out. Unfortunately not unfortunately not I don't know what the specific. Cases in the NHL but you know I say unfortunately because. One of the main leverage points as people know turn on their TVs and and watch football Sunday -- -- You know you haven't seen a significant hit to viewership -- certainly haven't seen a significant hit to sponsorship even though. We know that it hurts the brand we know that there are sponsors out there that are concerned about the quality of the game and yet this type of behavior continuously goes on. You mentioned not just in the NFL but in the NHL and in the NBA recently as well so. That's a concern for for us as is as an association and I know it's shared by other associations. And the only thing we can do is continue to stick together continue to be Smart and continue to speak up for the right things are -- think through time my pleasure. CSN Washington dot com.