Mr. Banner Goes To Washington

Eagles president Joe Banner is participating in the labor negotiations in Washington. (David Maialetti/Staff File Photo)

Eagles president Joe Banner is one of several NFL club executives and owners participating in the labor negotiations this week in Washington, D.C.

According to league sources, Banner has been involved, along with several other league executives, in developing a rookie wage-scale proposal. But that issue is on the back burner right now as the two sides duke it out over how to split the league’s $9.3 billion revenue pie.

Banner’s financial expertise could come in handy there as well. The owners have continually claimed that the current revenue split, which gives the owners $1 billion off the top for costs such as stadium construction and upkeep and 50 percent of the rest of the revenue, is an unsustainable business model. The players have asked the owners to prove that by opening their books and showing them team-by-team financial data. The owners have been reluctant to do that.

The two sides agreed last Friday to a 7-day extension in the expiring collective bargaining agreement while they continued to negotiate. If there is no significant progress by Friday afternoon, the union could decertify, which would leave the league open to an antitrust suit.