NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell recently sent a letter to owners advising them that if there is a work stoppage his salary will be reduced to $1, according to Jason La Canfora of NFL Network. In addition, Jeff Pash, the NFL's chief negotiator, will have his salary reduced to $1 if there is a work stoppage.
Goodell also told owners that annual bonuses for the league office staff will not be paid until April 2011 (after the CBA expires). VPs will hold back 10 percent of their bonuses, Senior VPs will hold back 25 percent of their bonuses and Executive VPs will hold back 35 percent of their bonuses. Those will not be paid back until a new CBA is reached.
So what does all of this mean?
In my view, the NFL is trying to sway some of the sympathy that the players are getting over to the ownership side. The owners are better equipped, financially, to handle a work stoppage, so this effort could take some of the public's attention away from that.
What wasn't addressed is what would happen to Goodell's bonuses. In 2009, Goodell made slightly under $3 million in salary -- but over $6 million in bonuses.