Gurley: NFL Players Should Strike

If the next CBA doesn't include guaranteed contracts, a lockout is inevitable, Todd Gurley says

Tiki and Tierney
July 09, 2018 - 9:45 am

USA Today Images

Todd Gurley doesn’t play for the Pittsburgh Steelers – or even in the AFC – but you better believe he’s following Le’Veon Bell’s contract dispute with keen interest. That's because Gurley, 23, will be an unrestricted free agent after the 2019 season.

Bell, one of the best players in the NFL, wants a long-term contract, but the Steelers haven’t given it. He was franchise-tagged in 2017 and made $12.1 million. He is slated to make $14.5 million via the franchise tag this season.

Bell has no guaranteed money beyond 2018.

“That’s just how the NFL is,” Gurley said on Tiki and Tierney. “It’s the team’s job to not want to pay you. We know that. It’s a sad situation. You put your body through all this, you do all this stuff on the field, (he’s) a top-five running back each year, and you can't get the money you ask for. That’s an unfortunate situation, but he’s still been able to play on the tag. That’s still a lot of money for him as well.”

Gurley, the tenth overall pick in 2015, is coming off a monster season. He rushed 279 times for 1,305 yards (4.7 yards per carry) and 13 touchdowns and caught 64 balls for 788 yards and six touchdowns.

Still, NFL contracts are not guaranteed. Gurley believes that will change in 2021. If it doesn’t, the players could strike.

“I think so,” Gurley said. “Honestly, we don’t really have a choice but to fight to get that done. We just have to come together as players. We’ll figure something out for sure. We definitely got to fix this situation because there’s no excuse for a C-level player in the NBA to get paid as much as the best running back in the NFL or the best receiver in the NFL. It just doesn’t add up.”