Bill Kostroun/Associated Press
New York Giants safety Michael Thomas is reportedly the favorite to succeed Eric Winston as president of the NFL Players Association.
Okung filed a complaint Monday with the National Labor Relations Board alleging the NFLPA, led by executive director DeMaurice Smith, forced a final vote on a new collective bargaining agreement despite objections from the union’s executive committee, a violation of the league’s constitution.
The NFLPA released a statement about the complaint Tuesday:
Mike Garafolo @MikeGarafolo
From @NFLPA on Russell Okung’s lawsuit https://t.co/D4KCGtTA1S
Winston, who last played in the NFL with the Cincinnati Bengals in 2017, has been the union’s president since March 2014.
He told Peter King of NBC Sports he expected the CBA to comfortably receive approval.
“I’ve gotten that question a few times,” Winston said. “I would think it would pass. I would think it would pass by a lot. It’s important that we let the process play out, and important that all players understand the issues and vote their conscience.”
Thomas is one of nine current vice presidents of the Players Association. He’s also a Giants’ team representative for the union and a team captain.
The 29-year-old Houston native earned a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Miami after playing college football at Stanford.
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“I was thinking about the future. This game is going to come to an end one day,” Thomas told Christina M. Tapper of Sports Illustrated in 2016. “I want to develop myself as a businessman. Pursuing an M.B.A. made sense. I’m excited about what I can do with this degree.”
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