NEW YORK -- In their latest round of bickering, the NFL and its players' association have exchanged prickly statements disputing whether players will have to take pay cuts as part of a new collective bargaining agreement.
After the NFL wrote on its labor Web site last week that no player would take a cut as a result of its proposal, the NFLPA responded Tuesday by saying -- tongue in cheek -- that it was ready to sign a deal guaranteeing that the salary cap won't be lowered and there will be no reduction in retired players' or other benefits under the CBA.
The NFLPA says on its site that, based on the league's statement, it renewed its proposal to freeze the salary cap at the 2009 level and asked the league to meet with its representatives immediately to extend the current labor agreement.
The NFL released a statement in response, saying the NFLPA intentionally misstated the league's proposal and is simply trying to "preserve an unacceptable economic system."
The current CBA expires in March 2011 and NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith has characterized the possibility of a work stoppage as a "14" on a scale of 1 to 10.
Without a new deal in place by Friday, 2010 will be the league's first uncapped season since 1993.