I have received a number of questions from players I represent about this MLFB league and requirement to sign a “Pre – Draft Player Contract”, in order to be considered for their Draft. I know very little about this start -up league, although it seems like there are some very good people like Herm Edwards and Wes Chandler who appear to be involved in some manner.
While, the hope is that this league is on solid financial ground and it will be an opportunity for young players to showcase their skills, I am somewhat perplexed by their attempt to charge players a large sum of money to work – out ($250 dollars), and their recent requirement to sign players to contracts pre draft. as condition of consideration The contract is an overly restrictive one, in which the players are required to exclusively commit to a league that has never played a down, or even disclosed the teams playing this year, if they play at all. They are offering nothing in return other than the right to be considered for their draft, after which there is not even a requirement for the team to assign the player to a team. The exclusive rights run through July, ( NFL rookie mini-camps are in May) it would also restrict a player from trying out for the CFL, who’s season will already be underway, and even from working out for NFL teams, while under contract, without the express permission of the MLFB..
I certainly appreciate the notion of getting commitments from the best players available, however, how can you in good conscience tie up these players rights “pre -draft”. Why not draft the best players available and then sign them to conditional contracts, like other professional leagues do. Even Negging in the CFL, only gives a team “negotiating rights” to a player. It does not bind the player to the team or restrict him, and once he knows, he has been negged he can demand a contract within 10 days or be released.
I can not recommend that a player sign these contracts pre -draft, it binds them exclusively with nothing in return. Having said that, I am sure plenty of players will unknowingly sign these contracts.