Add Hall of Famer Fran Tarkenton's name to the long list of folks who think the NFL and the NFL Players Association's inability to get a new collective bargaining agreement represents an epic fail.
The former Vikings and Giants quarterback ripped both sides in the dispute, and said in an interview with Dino Costa last night on SixiusXM's Mad Dog Radio it's mind-boggling there's no deal.
"With everything going on in the world, we’ve got the tragedy in Japan and what’s happening in all the Middle East when all these people are wanting freedom, and it’s a wonderful thing," Tarkenton said. "And here we have the most successful sports franchise in the world, the National Football League, we don’t want to give this up. And we understand in professional football, teams win, individuals don’t. And it’s time for these owners and time for these players to sit down together, get the lawyers out of the [room], lawyers don’t help things. Lawyers muck up things. Lawyers cause problems, lawyers in divorce suits, they don’t help the people get back together. And we need to get real people, get the lawyers out of the negotiating room, stop the lawsuits, and let’s get real people, owners and players, who are partners in all this, let’s let them get together and get this thing solved now rather than later.”
Tarkenton said he's not taking sides in the dispute. At least not with the owners or the players.
“I don’t take the owners’ side," he said. "I don’t take the players’ side. I take the fans’ side. This is not a typical labor situation. The players are not impoverished. The players are making the most money of any generation ever. They’re the greatest players we’ve ever had. Every generation has gotten better and this generation has gotten better. The owners, certainly, these are billionaire owners. And they’ve got great egos. There’s a big pot of money here. There’s plenty of money here. Everybody is doing well. Let’s don’t jeopardize what we have. Let’s think of how we can get this together. They’re not that far apart."
Tarkenton said he wants a crack at brokering a deal.
“I would love to be the arbitrator between the players and the owners," he said. "You know what? We’d get it done in about two minutes.”