NFLPA To Players: Expect A Lockout, Save Your Paychecks

On Saturday in the Patriots' locker room, reporters noticed some letters on a table. As everyone knows, the best way to keep information confidential is to print out multiple copies of it and scatter it on a table in the middle of a room full of reporters. One intrepid reporter, though, got wise.

The letter was dated Wednesday, and copies were strewn across a table in the New England Patriots locker room during the media availability on Saturday. After a reporter asked players about the letter, a Patriots spokesman flipped the copies face-down.

 But wait! If it's face-down, you can't read it! Why would he do that... ohhhh. He doesn't want reporters to see it. He probably got kicked out of the CIA for being too awesome at his job. So what was the super-secret information, anyway?

The NFL players’ union is advising its members to prepare for a lockout it expects to come in March, telling players to save their last three game checks this year in case there is no season in 2011.

The league minimum is $320,000. Players have nine paydays -- eight of them bi-weekly, and one weekly. So if a min player with no credited experience saves his last three full paychecks, that should gross at about $113,000. Every player, if he follows the NFLPA's advice, will have at least this much money (minus taxes) squirreled away. Here is what he should spend it on:

- Bottled water.

- Powdered food rations.

- Butane stove.

- Butane.

- A bear bag used to hoist your things from a tree branch, out of a bear's reach, so that no bears will drink your water, eat your food, and get high on your butane.

- Guns and ammunition.

- Longsword, for when you run out of ammunition.

- A laminated copy of the NFL rule book. Upon returning to civilization in 15 years (note: approx. 5,475 sunrises), football will be absent from the public intelligence, and you may well have the only surviving document of its rules and regulations.

- Your helmet. You don't want any wilderness creatures to render you with a wilderness concussion.

- A cigarette lighter. If all is lost, start a fire in the heart of the woods that will spread across the land and usher in a new beginning. You shall then row your boat to sea, directly across the 39th parallel. When you are, at long last, out of energy and you can row no further, an island will appear before you. We will be waiting at this island. Bring some beerskis!

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