If Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas don’t sign long-term contracts with their respective teams by Wednesday’s deadline, the NFL Players Association plans to move ahead with collusion charges against the Denver Broncos and Dallas Cowboys, reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
According to Schefter, the NFL players’ union informed the Broncos and Cowboys on Monday that they need to preserve any e-mails, phone records, texts and records of other communication between the two teams.
The union believes it has enough credible evidence that the Cowboys and Broncos have had conversations about the negotiations of long-term deals for Bryant and Thomas.
According to a source, Cowboys executive vice president/COO Stephen Jones told Bryant during a recent conversation that he’d had a conversation with Broncos GM John Elway about the negotiations, which the union believes would constitute a violation of the CBA’s anti-collusion rules.
If either Thomas or Bryant doesn’t sign by Wednesday’s deadline, the union would proceed with the claim and believes that a success would result in treble damages, entitling the player or players in question to triple the value of the highest current wide receiver contract on the market. Calvin Johnson of the Detroit Lions, at roughly $16.2 million per year, is the NFL’s highest-paid wide receiver.
After Wednesday, players designated franchise players by their teams cannot sign long-term deals until after the end of the 2015 season.