As the NFL owners and players meet in pursuit of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement in Chantilly on Tuesday, a ruling passed down late Tuesday night carries a lot of significance for the NFL's bargaining position. Judge David Doty has overruled a previous ruling, deciding that the NFL violated the CBA by reaching deals with television networks that would allow the league to receive that revenue even in the event of a lockout.
A previous ruling by special master Stephen Burbank said the NFL was still entitled to that money, but that has been overturned. This means the league cannot continue to count on money coming in if there is a lockout. In essence, they become like the players. This will surely put more pressure on both sides as they desperately try to hash out a new arrangement before a lockout would take effect on Thursday.
The NFL Players Association has responded by suggesting the ruling shows the league had a "predetermined plan" to lock out the players for two years. The league responded by saying the ruling would have no effect on the efforts to negotiate a new agreement.