For the past few months NFL fans have waited anxiously for a deal to be worked out between NFL owners and players. Countless hours have been spent watching updates about the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) and days have slowly melted into one another as the fans were left wondering if there would be a 2011 NFL season. Then, when hope was in sight, the players postponed their vote on the new CBA (although their decision was in admirable respect to Bob Kraft and the loss of his wife).
However, the fans have had enough! Their voices have gone unheard during the entire process of bickering and name-calling during the last few months and they will not tolerate it any longer. So, in response to the growing unrest among fans a new association has been formed that is very quickly gaining the attention of the NFL. On July 12th, David Abeyta and Mike Allen teamed up to create the Professional Football League Fans Association (PFLFA) and their ranks are growing. In their first ten days as an “association” the group has amassed nearly 200 followers, their goal is to reach well into the thousands.
The impact of a football fans association could be monumental. Unlike most businesses in the United States, fans, in general, do not have stock in their team (with the exception of Green Bay). That means that the players and owners can prolong the lockout as long as they seem “suitable” while their main financial supporters are left in the dark. This is not business savvy but it is how the NFL has operated since it began. If the fans were to have a voice in all things considered for the NFL there could be some major implications.
Businesses throughout the country sell stock in their companies in order to strengthen their business. This allows the share-holders a voice in the operations of the company while building a stronger support structure for the company, perhaps the NFL should follow suit. Allowing fans to have share-holding powers in the NFL, in general, would strengthen fan support, bring an economic boost to the NFL, and allow the main financial contributor to have a real impact.
While the PFLPA is still a fledgling idea it is one that should not be ignored. Already NFL.com, BleacherReport.com, and other sporting sites are making mention of the association. No longer will the fans sit idly by dreaming of an end to the lockout. Fans want to be heard and now, they will be! You too can join the movement to have your voice heard by the NFL by going the PFLPA page of Facebook.