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CBA extended to March 11

Posted Mar 3, 2011

Updated: 3-4-11, 2:15 p.m.

From Disney World to Paul Brown Stadium, Bengals everywhere Thursday pondered the collective bargaining agreement crisis and left tackle Andrew Whitworth called it.

On Friday, the CBA was extended another week to Friday, March 11. Teams can't cut, sign or trade players during this week, although they can still talk to agents.

Even though there was a 24-hour extension granted Thursday, wide receiver Chad Ochocinco, appearing at Disney as part of ESPN Weekend, said players should prepare for a lockout and reminded his brethren that the owners "are still going to be eating" after they're done playing.

Whitworth, the Bengals representative to the NFL Players Association, said the extension was a hopeful sign and thinks it could mean another extension is on the way.

He was right.

"There's not enough time to do much and there are so many issues on the table it would be hard to see anything getting done in 24 hours," Whitworth said. "It could mean there'll be an extension, I'm not sure, maybe for a week, but I don't know."

Whitworth said the team reps had a conference call Thursday afternoon but they weren't told much and he's not sure what pushed the sides closer. For much of Thursday it looked like the NFLPA would vote to decertify and sue the league while the NFL locked out the players.


Nugent
It hit Bengals kicker Mike Nugent on Thursday on the way to PBS as the players and owners faced a midnight lockout deadline that has now been extended to Saturday at midnight.

"It makes you realize what a really big business it is," Nugent said. "No one is bigger than the system and everyone wants a piece of the pie."

Both sides have long made plans for a lockout and on Thursday they were close to becoming reality. Nugent, three months removed from his knee reconstruction, has made plans to move his rehab to Ohio State. Since a lockout prevents players from using the facilities and talking to team employees, Nugent assumed Thursday's session would be his last with club rehab director Nick Cosgray.

Linebacker Rey Maualuga dropped by the equipment room to get shoulder pads and gloves for a Friday photo shoot, his face still flushed from getting his wisdom teeth pulled Wednesday. The players lose their health insurance in a lockout and are picked up in a COBRA plan.

"It's crazy just knowing you don't have insurance," he said. "Pray to God we don't get sick or nothing else happens."

Like his teammates, Maualuga has plans to move his offseason workouts. He's joining fullback Fui Vakapuna and wide receiver Jordan Shipley at the D1 facility in Sharonville, Ohio, about 20 minutes north of Cincinnati. The USC product eschewed going back to work out in Los Angeles.

"Save my money; I'm paying my rent here," he said.

"I don't think it's going to be a long time. Football is a big event and everybody loves to watch it," Maualuga said. "Without football, it's just going to be blah. We've got guys that are working on it. We've got people negotiating with what they've got to do to come up with a new CBA. For the time being, we just have to get ready to work out, stay out of trouble, just be ready when the time comes."

It is not going to be a very glamorous break for him.

"Money comes, money goes. I learned that real quick," Maualuga said. "Learn to spend money wisely … fixing up your cars, getting video games, all that can wait. Just get up work out, eat,  sleep, as long as I have a roof over my head, I'm fine." 

 

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