As a loyal Redskins and National Football League fan, I am deeply disturbed by the threat of a players' strike this fall. Both sides, labor and management, claim that they don't want to see a strike, yet neither seems willing to make any concessions. In the end, the fans are the victims of a strike, but they have no say in the matter.

Gene Upshaw and the National Football League Players Association are leading the players down a dark path. The battle is not over money, but over power and authority. The union feels that the players should be able to decide where they play and under what conditions. The owners feel that they pay enough money to decide these issues themselves.

The owners are right. How many 22-year-olds are paid $400,000 for six months' work? It is my opinion that the majority of players are satisfied with the league as it is and that the NFLPA is exerting pressure on them to strike against their will. After all, these players would not sign the contracts to play football if they weren't content with the terms.

I suggest that the owners send a strong message to Mr. Upshaw and the NFLPA: any player who strikes will be banned from the NFL for life. In the short run this might hurt the NFL, but over the long run it would help to stabilize the league.

Yes, I enjoy Sunday afternoons at RFK, but I refuse to be manipulated every time the collective bargaining agreement expires.



I am an avid football fan, and as such I am sick and tired of being threatened with a strike by the NFLPA. In one year I might bring home $25,000 in salary. I'm sick of players who are making hundreds of thousands of dollars whining about money, free agency and the like. I disagree with player representative Neal Olkewicz's statement {Sports, Sept. 11} that fans will not "support a bunch of players who were cut." I, for one, vote for playing ball.

Players have to remember who they work for: the fans. I will support a team of janitors on one condition: they must wear burgundy and gold.

By the way, I'm No. 18,383 on the ticket waiting list.