The NFL is in utter chaos. Complete and total meltdown mode. Is their any league that has looked worse in as many ways as they have, in as quick of a time period as the National Football League?
Even if the latest, a collusion charge filing by the NFLPA gets dismissed - which is entirely possible based on a myriad of factors, the league has another black eye.
The NFLPA is not innocent in the matter, either.
However, Roger Goodell, the all powerful center of the NFL universe is quickly becoming the most controversial figure in all of professional sports.
The NFL has been sued countless times (wrongly in my opinion) by many ex-players for their purported role in the concussion issue, and resulting health problems and sometimes deaths of these alumni.
The amount of lawsuits are dizzying. Suffice it to say, if it continues at this rate, the league could spend more time and focus in a court of law over the next ten years, than in the court of public opinion which is already anti-NFL.
The NFL and Roger Goodell has been sued by Jonathan Vilma of the New Orleans Saints for libel and slander, as a direct result of the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal.
The NFL also strong-armed the NFLPA if the union is to be taken at their word, into accepting the penalties to the Redskins and the Cowboys, in order to preserve a 120 + million dollar salary cap level in 2012.
Jeffrey Kessler of the NFLPA, via conference call on Wednesday afternoon told reporters "The NFL never told us these were for cap violations"
Kessler continued, "If we wanted other salary cap increases....the price for doing that would be this salary cap re-allocation. We were forced to agree to these penalties. It was take it or leave it."
All of that is disputable, but more interesting, is that Kessler and the NFLPA asserted that the NFL told the NFLPA, the penalties were for competitive balance issues. Of course, if true, it was technically correct - because that is the public stance the league initially took.
They could not take the public stance that the Redskins and Cowboys violated the salary cap, because there was no cap in 2010. However, the NFLPA contends in Wednesday's filing that the league had a 'secret' salary cap of $123 million per team during the uncapped year.
Wednesday's filing has nothing to do with the result of Stephen Burbank's decision to dismiss the Redskins and Cowboys grievance on Tuesday, and will not result in any relief, even if successful for either organization.
"We're representing the players. The Cowboys & Redskins will have to speak for themselves," Kessler said.
Still, while this action may not help Dallas or Washington, the NFL has another dirty mess to deal with, in what has amounted to be the most insane off-season in history.
The league may be able to avoid further legal action by the Redskins/Cowboys and even by the NFLPA because as it was described to ESPN 980 by a legal expert, "they (NFL) managed to put it in a collectively bargained agreement, so they're can not be any antitrust. They are shielded from anti-trust inquiry."
Burbank mentioned in his ruling that the NFL was protected from anti-trust inquiry, but that the teams had every right to pursue matters further. However, a new filing could result in a public bloodbath of Al Davis like proportions. I have heard that the evidence is overwhelming and while it is not being released publicly, a state or federal lawsuit could open the floodgates.
Basically, a collectively bargained agreement is designed to protect both parties, and benefit both parties, but in this case - the NFLPA asserts that the NFL lied to create the addendum to the CBA, and the NFLPA contends that they would never have agreed to the Redskins and Cowboys penalties IF they were told that the truth.
The problem in a nutshell is this, Roger Goodell has so much power that some of the decisions he has made, could be described as if he is running a pure dictatorship. He serves as the 'judge, jury and the executioner' in the words of a NFL source.
Another high ranking NFL source explained to ESPN 980 on Wednesday "He's everything Paul Tagliabue came to be at the end. He's immune, he can do anything he wants."
That of course includes putting the screws to the Washington Redskins, the Dallas Cowboys, the New Orleans Saints, the NFLPA and countless others, just because he is the all-powerful center of the sports universe.