If you want to know why the owners might try to wait out this lockout until players start missing games and more paychecks – that is, if the courts allow them to do it (which, at this point, looks kind of doubtful) – check out this story from Yahoo! Sports’ Postgame.
In the story, it’s reported that players from at least 16 different teams have taken out short-term, high-interest loans that range from 18 to 24 percent (and if the person defaults on the loan, it rises to an astronomical 36 percent) because some players are on the verge of having no money.
But the reporting in this Postgame story is scary, because when you start talking about predatory lenders, you’re talking about bad, bad news.
"There are a lot of people out there pitching these things," an anonymous attorney told the website. "It’s almost predatory lending. It's people going to guys who they know are already in debt, or don’t have the ability to pay their Bills during the year and [lending them money] at such obscene terms, that you say, 'Hey, no one would ever sign something like this.' But a lot of players are."
Before the 2010 season began, we talked about the NFLPA’s advice to players to start saving money, but because many of these players are young and don’t have a solid base of financial wherewithal (even if they’re paying a financial advisor to give them exactly that), some ignored the union’s advice and spent money as if plenty more would be there in 2011.
Here’s a little more from the article (but you really need to read the entire piece):
"I know at least 16 different teams that have had players go out and have to set these [high risk loans] up," said the adviser. "Guys on the Dolphins, Saints, 49ers, Panthers, Chargers, Bears, Vikings."
The adviser said he believes as many as 10 percent of the nearly 1,800 players in the league have secured some form of lending at this point, and estimates at least another 20 percent are in the process of securing lending now. Based on conversations he has had with other leading figures in the industry, he believes close to half of the players in the NFL will secure some form of lending if the lockout continues past Labor Day.
Fifty percent of players, frankly, is hard to believe. But even if it’s half of that, the owners have to be smiling at the thought of so much potential leverage. And hoping that Judge Susan Nelson doesn’t grant a temporary injunction in the Brady v NFL case that would lift the lockout.
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