Nine billion dollars.
Though it pales in comparison to my last electric bill, it’s still a nice chunk of change. It’s also the main reason why there may not be an NFL season in 2011.
By now, it has been well-documented: The owners and players, try as they might, just can’t seem to agree on how to best divvy up $9 billion in revenue. It’s like tugging on opposite wings of the goose that lays the golden egg.
The solution? A lockout.
Seems perfectly reasonable.
But alas, every dark cloud has a silver lining. And here at the Stop, we’re all about silver linings. (Well, that and a good corned beef sandwich, but I digress.)
Anyway, it came out last week that two NFL wide receivers — the Dallas Cowboys’ Troy Bergeron and Rod Windsor of the Cleveland Browns — have decided to ride out the current labor dispute by taking their talents to the Arena Football League.
Perhaps feeling a bit like the second-best-looking-girl-at-the-dance, league Commissioner Jerry B. Kurz said, "We assumed there would be players that would join the AFL. We are not sure how big the influx will be.”
Influx? Settle down, Jerry. Neither Windsor nor Bergeron (wait, doesn’t he also host a dance show on ABC?) are exactly household names. In fact, neither has actually played in a real-live NFL game. Not exactly Peyton Manning and Tom Brady here.
Still, the trend seems to be catching on. Cincinnati Bengals star receiver and shameless self-promoter Chad Ochocinco has secured a four-day tryout with Major League Soccer team Sporting Kansas City. And Baltimore Ravens safety Tom Zbikowski this month revived a fledgling boxing career (he’s now 2-0 as a pro).
Which begs the question: What other lines of work can you see NFLers pursuing if they can’t put on the pads every Sunday? Will they simply dip into different sports? Or, is there a vice president of corporate development lurking in the bunch?
As always, I invite your feedback.