Commissioner Roger Goodell is close to having job security beyond the finalization of the next labor deal. NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith still has a hurdle or two before he can match that.
His third three-year term expires in March 2018. In an interview to be televised by HBO on Tuesday, Bryant Gumbel asked Smith whether he hopes to stay.
“If the players want me to stay and I wanna stay, well, then there’s a mutuality of interest,” Smith said.
“Do you not want to stay?”
“I didn’t say that,” Smith said.
“I’m just asking,” Gumbel added. “On the record, do you want to stay?”
“I intend to stay next year,” Smith said. “Yeah and I would like to. I think there’s work that needs to be done. At the end of the day, am I always going to be happy with the decision of the players and respect their decision? Absolutely.”
If Smith does another three-year deal next March, his next contract would expire not long after the current labor deal reaches its ending date. Which could make for awkward times for the union, if a collection of candidates who have ideas about how to proceed with an expired CBA try to nudge Smith out just as a potential labor battle is beginning.