The organization formerly known as the NFLPA now says that it will not interfere with the 2011 NFL Draft.
The events planned by the NFLPA, called the 2011 NFLPA Rookie Debut, has been expanded to go from one night to three days. Previously, the NFLPA's event was a dinner held on Wednesday evening, the night before the beginning of the NFL Draft. The revamped Debut will begin April 28 and go through the 30th. The former player's union states that their events will not interfere with the broadcast of the draft.
The former NFLPA now says that they will not prevent the selected players from their iconic moment on the Radio City Music Hall stage, being greeted by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
The first day of this year's event NFLPA event, as described by Albert Breer of NFL.com, will go like this:
"The NFLPA will host a reception and dinner for the prospects and their families at a Times Square hotel on Thursday at 4 p.m. The festivities are scheduled to wrap up by 7 p.m., giving the players time to make the short trip to Radio City Music Hall for the 8 p.m. start of the draft."
NFLLockout.com, the new home of the former Player's Association, describes The Debut as an event
"Designed to welcome incoming rookies and their families to the NFLPA family, and enable relationships to form between current and former players, NFLPA and NFLPI staff and select corporate partners."
The decision to not interfere with the draft is a good move by the NFLPA. When news that they would attempt to interfere with the draft broke, the tide of support that once leaned towards the players rapidly moved to anger. Interfering with a moment that young players have dreamed about and worked hard to get to is not the way to win over increasingly disgusting fans to your side. Pressuring young players to choose between future employers and future teammates is not fair, and it does nothing to move the owners and the players towards a collective bargaining agreement.