Lockout Law and Legal Definition In the employment context, a lockout occurs when management shuts down company operations to prevent union workers from working. It is a tactic typically used by employers to hinder union organization or to gain leverage in labour disputes. So the NFL owners were attempting to gain leverage in the dispute with Kaepernick. The NFL settled a case with Kaepernick where they pretty much agreed that they were locking the player out in order to gain leverage against the union employee. I don't know the wording on the case, but I believe that there was nothing against another team picking Kaepernick up after the case was settled. Eric Reid also was picked up by the Carolina Panthers. Now if the NFL owners are ignoring Kaepernick and not allowing him to play, wouldn't that be collusion? Collusion Law and Legal Definition Collusion occurs when two persons or representatives of an entity or organization make an agreement to deceive or mislead another. Such agreements are usually secretive, and involve fraud or gaining an unfair advantage over a third party, competitors, consumers or others with whom they are negotiating. The collusion, therefore, makes the bargaining process inherently unfair. Collusion can involve price or wage fixing, kickbacks, or misrepresenting the independence of the relationship betweeen the colluding parties.