Jul 12, 2019

NFL owners continue pushing for 18-game season

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and Rams owner Stan Kroenke. Photo: Keith Birmingham/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images

With the NFL and its players union in the midst of negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement, owners continue to push for an 18-game regular season.

Why it matters: The NFLPA estimates that an additional two games could add as much as $2.5 billion in annual revenue, which would, in turn, add about $15 million to the salary cap.

  • "Across the league's 32 teams, that has the potential to put nearly half a billion dollars in the hands of players annually," writes WSJ's Andrew Beaton (subscription).

Yes, but: The players are pushing back mainly due to injury concerns.

  • The additional two games would reduce the average career span from 3.3 years to 2.8 years, according to the NFLPA's estimates, which is significant because players don't become eligible for post-career benefits until they've played for three years.
  • One potential solution that the owners have proposed is to play 18 games but only allow each player to play in 16 of them … which is maybe the dumbest idea I've ever heard and such a blatant way to make more money while diluting the product. I can't even take it seriously.

The bottom line: This debate isn't going anywhere so get used to it.

Go deeper

An 18-game NFL season might be unavoidable

NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith (left) and NFLPA executive members. Photo: Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NFL and the NFLPA are in the midst of negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement, and reports indicate that owners are pushing for an 18-game regular season, with each player limited to 16 games.

What they're saying: Despite pushback from players and even some of the owners, SI's Andrew Brandt believes an 18-game season is the only way a new CBA gets signed.

Go deeperArrowJul 24, 2019

The health risks of specialization in youth sports

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

In 2016, multiple studies found that youth athletes who specialized in one sport and played it year round (as opposed to being multi-sport athletes) were at significantly higher risk of suffering an overuse injury.

Why it matters: This has become an increasingly alarming issue since those studies were released — particularly when it comes to basketball, the most popular youth sport in America.

Go deeperArrowJul 17, 2019

Violent video games don't cause mass shootings

Violent video games — as well as television and movies — have been a frequent scapegoat for acts of real-world violence.

Reality check: It's hard to ignore the fact that video games are popular all over the world, yet mass shootings aren't common in most of those places. Naturally, that was the case put forth by the Entertainment Software Association, the video game industry's trade group.

Go deeperArrowAug 5, 2019