The NFL’s been operating on the latest CBA since the 2011 season, one that saw its offseason condensed due to the lockout. The NFLPA discussed a radical option should another lockout ensue when the league and the union are involved in the next CBA negotiations, according to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report. Cole reports a few among NFLPA brass discussed for more than two years the prospect of staging an alternative league that would operate if the owners lock the players out again. Said league would be a way for players to compensate for potential missed game checks, a factor that played into the negotiations during the 2011 lockout, but Cole notes this endeavor would require a major financial commitment from an outside party to fund the effort.

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk broached this subject this weekend, one that’s continued to see windfall sums go to NBA players. NBA salaries, which mostly come fully guaranteed, are usually a talking point for NFLers during the offseason. This week brought the likes of Otto Porter and Tim Hardaway Jr. cashing in as restricted free agents, with the Wizards matching a Nets four-year, $106.5 million offer sheet to Porter and the Hawks declining to match a Knicks four-year, $71 million sheet for Hardaway.

Porter’s $106 million is fully guaranteed. No NFL player guaranteed to make as much as a zero-time NBA All-Star — and a player who’s served as the No. 3 scoring option on his own team — would naturally create some questions. Hardaway’s contract ensures he will make more per year than any NFL wide receiver is currently scheduled to receive.

Noting players’ fear of losing out on game checks weakened the NFLPA’s position in the 2011 negotiations, Florio writes the union needs to be planning ahead to dig in on a longer work stoppage this time. The CBA expires after the 2020 season, and the PFT writer offers that the players need to publicly pursue TV deals and stadium agreements to strengthen their stance against the owners for a better agreement on the next CBA. Greater percentages of contracts being guaranteed figures to be a key point in the ensuing negotiations.

The NBA-vs.-NFL argument has to factor in roster sizes, making NBA players’ skills inherently more valuable. But the NFL does bring in billions more in revenue. Chris Baker of the Buccaneers, who signed for three years and $15.75 million, and former Redskins teammate Terrance Knighton are among the latest to discuss the disparity between the leagues’ contracts. Neither made the point NBAers should make less, only that the NFL should pay its players more.

There is some precedent for NFL players staging outside games. The NFLPA organized two all-star games during the 1982 strike, one that wiped out seven games of the NFL season, but fewer than 10,000 fans attended each.

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