And of course there is that QB who wore # 11. I kind of liked him as well.
If no owners were willing to pay a salary that a free agent was looking for, would the player quit football? No. He would sign for the best salary that he was being offered, whatever that would be. It is competition and desire to win that makes the owners spend what they spend to get "their" guy.
If the owners wanted to reduce salaries bad enough they could all agree to a pact saying that they are not going to pay more than a certain amount for a certain player, They could even set the prices up by position. But, that will never happen because the owners are almost as competitive as the players and all want to put the best team on the field.
The players get their % of the total revenues. That's the negotiated deal. That's the CBA.
The owners don't set the cap number. The cap number is dictated by total NFL revenues.
Just because there's a limited pool of money from which to pay players doesn't mean that if Player A gets x dollars, Player B can only get y. Here's my response to that... If you want to make more money, be a better player.
"They come to the line of scrimmage and the first thing they do is start looking for me....I know, and they know. When they’d find me they’d start screaming: 56 left ! 56 left!....So there’s this thing I did. After the play was over I’d come up behind them and whisper: don’t worry where I am. I’ll tell you when I get there."
- Lawrence Taylor