Draft Day And A Celebration Of Restraint Of Trade

The draft becomes legal when two parties agree despite injuring a third party, incoming players.

There are people who make a lot of money analyzing the National Football League Draft who will never say these words. The National Football League Draft is a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act and is only made legal through collective bargaining. The draft is illegal as it stops elite college football players from shopping around for the best job. The players are denied choices where they can work. They have just one place to go. If a player decides not to report to the team that drafts him, that player can sit out, force a trade or play in Canada or in the spring minor leagues, the USFL or XFL.

Here is how the draft becomes legal even though a third party, the incoming college players are hurt. NFL owners and the National Football League Players Association can collectively bargain conditions for the draft and if that means shutting down college football players’ job possibilities so be it. The cottage industry that makes a ton of money talking essentially about nothing, college players being drafted into the National Football League, needs to keep the pretense going and say nothing. The league claims it wants competitive balance and having the worst teams take the best players in a draft order that starts with the worst team picking first does that. But in reality, that isn’t the reason that the owners want the draft. By having a draft, the owners can suppress salaries and stop owners from bidding for the best college players. Football fans think the 2023 Kansas City draft is one of the best football events going but what they are celebrating is a suppression of trade. NFL owners are very happy no one notices or cares that the draft is essentially illegal. The draft is a salary suppression tactic.

Evan Weiner’s books are available at iTunes – https://books.apple.com/us/author/evan-weiner/id595575191

Evan can be reached at evan_weiner@hotmail.com

FILE – In this April 29, 2021, file photo, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. (AP Photo/Steve Luciano)