The NFL labor dispute between the owners and the players union has been getting heated.
If the two sides don't come to an agreement on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), NFL football may not be played in 2011 and fans will be left with nothing exciting to watch on Sunday afternoons. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has stated 18 games is what the fans want and cutting two preseason games would be an easy thing to do.
Really though, the issue is safety for the players in the NFL.
With the increasing number of injuries and players put on injured reserve each year, adding two games onto the regular season would just heighten the number of injuries.
Goodell talks about making players wear better equipment and forcing players to wear thigh and knee pads, but really he wants the NFL to become more profitable than it already is. Most players don't want to add two more games to the regular season because the season is already a struggle for them to get through it in one piece. It's a physical and mental grind, and once the playoffs start, basically every player is hurting.
If Goodell and the owners reduce the number of preseason games, starters will need more reps in those games, which makes it harder for younger guys to prove they can make it in the league. Guys like Tony Romo, Marques Colston, James Harrison, Bart Scott, Josh Cribbs and even Tom Brady may not be in the NFL right now if it wasn't for those preseason games.
Giving players more money and adding more players to the roster may solve the problem short term, but money will never buy a player's health when he's out of the league, taking painkillers and is barely able to walk. The owners and Goodell need to realize this and also realize that not all fans want a longer regular season.