The NFL Players' Association has been busy today, launching a social media campaign and filing a claim accusing the NFL of collusion. The collusion case was filed with "the same special master who is considering the union's complaint about the league's TV contracts," the Associated Press report notes.
The NFLPA has been "exploring" the possibility of claiming collusion since this summer. The two sides spent much more time communicating with each other during the offseason than they have in recent months. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell responded to the collusion claim by lamenting the lack of communication, as the last formal talk between the league and labor occurred before Thanksgiving. During the summer the NFLPA was "optimistic" about finding common ground, but that optimism has faded.
The current collective bargaining agreement expires in March. Primary issues preventing the establishment of a new one include money, money, and money. More specifically, how to divide the massive windfall the NFL brings in every year. Goodell has stressed the institution of a rookie salary cap and the expansion of the regular season as key to a new agreement.
Previously the NFLPA has advised players to save money in case of a lockout, created a website to counter the league's, and warned that health benefits could soon expire if a new CBA isn't agreed upon. Early in the season NFL teams voted to decertify the union, which would empower players to sure the NFL.