The answer may surprise you.
As the NFL continues to embrace the idea of a team-wide “team marriage” (think of it as a new union), the NFLPA is urging the league to change its policy.
The NFLPA said Monday that it is requesting that the league reverse its “marriage covenant” that forbids players from marrying teammates in a stadium-specific event.
The league’s “marriage pact” is a legal document that prevents players from dating teammates in any manner in any stadium, except for “a limited number of instances in which it is in the interest of the team to do so,” according to the NFL.
In its letter to the league, the NFL Players Association argued that the NFL “has no obligation to permit team-specific events involving players to occur” in its stadiums, and it called on the league “to reverse its marriage covenant, which forbids players to date teammates in stadiums where they are allowed to be present.”
The NFL is in talks with the NFLP to make the changes, and the union wants a “compromise” on the NFL’s policy.
“The league should take a step back and allow the players to be the ones to change it,” NFLPA President DeMaurice Smith said in a statement.
“We are hopeful that the union can get a better deal, so that players are not forced to make these types of sacrifices.”
The union is asking the NFL to change the “marriage agreement” and allow players to marry teammates in stadium-wide events, but it also wants the league’s policies changed to include “no-contact” agreements, where players are allowed not to meet teammates during any specific time.
“Any agreement that would allow players or their agents to go against the league and violate their players’ privacy by allowing players to go on dates with players outside of the stadium should be rejected,” the union wrote.
The union’s request comes after the NFL announced last week that it was removing the ban on teams dating in stadiums that are part of a stadium network and allowing players, team employees and others to meet in a variety of venues during NFL games.
The new policy, which is effective March 1, allows teams to “exercise a wide variety of non-partner activities, including social gatherings, team activities and team activities outside of a football stadium.”
But the union argued that “any policy that would permit a team to use non-party activities to ‘partner up’ with a player and potentially to date players outside the stadium violates the players’ right to privacy.”
In a statement released Monday, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the league is “considering the union’s proposal” and that “we have heard the union request that the policy be reversed.”