NFL Seeks to Dampen Rookie Draft Events
By John Fennelly on Apr 12, 2011, 6:09 am
According to CBSSports.com’s Mike Freeman, NFL personnel have reportedly threatened ramifications for draftees who attend the NFLPA’s series of events on the days of the draft.
Freeman claims this is an effort to “sabotage” the events after the NFLPA announced yesterday there is a formidable constituency of current, former and future NFL stars scheduled to attend.
The league possibly fears these events could upstage the draft itself and sway public opinion towards the players in the current labor negotiations. From CBSSports.com……
NFL Seeks to Dampen Rookie Draft Events | GiantsFootballBlog.com
Multiple sources tell CBSSports.com that team scouts, personnel men and assistant coaches are informing agents that their draftees should stay away from the NFLPA event. |
The effort to ask the rookies to boycott the former union’s draft events has infuriated several agents who spoke on the condition of anonymity to CBSSports.com out of fear of reprisal from the league.
One thing in particular has angered agents as well as members of the trade association. One of the lead draft analysts for NFL.com, which is league-owned, has contacted multiple draft prospects and told them not to attend the NFLPA event.
The analyst has called prospects, in some cases, six and seven times, telling them that if they attended the NFLPA event they would not be allowed to attend the NFL Draft and walk on stage with commissioner Roger Goodell.
An NFL spokesman said he was unaware of such accusations and added that players are allowed to make whatever decision they’d like regarding the draft.
Agents believe this is a coordinated effort by the league to undermine the NFLPA event and is a direct response to the NFLPA once threatening to withhold rookies from the draft.