« NFL players voted with a vote count of 1,019 to 959 to accept ratification of a new collective bargaining agreement, » the NFLPA said in a statement. « This result follows a long and democratic process, in accordance with our Constitution. An independent accountant received the ballots through a secure electronic platform and verified, recorded and certified the results. The NFL Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) is an employment contract that reflects the results of collective bargaining between the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) and the National Football League (NFL) (the commissioner and the 32 team owners). The employment contract classifies the league`s revenue distribution, sets health and safety standards, and defines benefits, including pensions and medical benefits, for all NFL players. The first collective bargaining agreement was concluded in 1968, after NFLPA players decided to go on strike to increase wages, pensions and benefits for all players in the league. Subsequent negotiations on the collective bargaining agreement required complaints against injuries, a guaranteed percentage of revenue for players, an extension of the free agency and other matters affecting NFL business. The NFLPA and the team`s owners have negotiated seven different contracts since 1968. In a result that will transform the NFL and create work harmony for the next 11 seasons, members of the NFL Players Association voted to ratify a new collective bargaining agreement previously approved by NFL owners in February.
Last month, the 11 players on the executive committee took the extraordinary step of voting 6 to 5 not to approve the agreement. At a meeting the following week, the 32 players` representatives also refused to approve the agreement, but agreed to vote on full membership. With a new CBA, teams will be able to target the start of the league`s new year, which opens Wednesday at 16 .m ET clock. The deadline for teams to use the franchise or transition date on a player is Monday at 11:59:59 a.m. Teams used to have the option of using both franchise and transition days under the old CBA — a special rule that applies to the final year of the agreement — but with the new agreement, clubs can only use one. However, there appears to have been strong opposition to this collective agreement. Many stars, including Aaron Rodgers, Russell Wilson, J.J. Watt and Todd Gurley, objected. The total number of votes among the nearly 2500 union members participating was 1,019-959. The ratification required a simple majority – the results were announced on Sunday – and could spark lingering resentment among union members, given the proximity of the vote. A new contract was negotiated in 1970 after the NFLPA merged with the American Football League Players Association.
 During negotiations on the new CBA, players went on strike in July 1970.  The new agreement was reached after four days.  The agreement increased the minimum wage for players and changed the league`s medical and retirement programs.  It also provided for an impartial reconciliation of injury complaints, which had been previously decided by the NFL Commissioner.  John Mackey was elected president of the NFLPA during these negotiations and the new agreement was to cover the 1970 to 1973 seasons.  In order to allay players` concerns about the extension of the season, the owners agreed to eliminate a pre-season game and limit the number of padded drills that can be organized during training camp. Players receive one week after the third and final pre-season game.