There may not be a signed deal in place for a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA), but both the NFL owners and players seem to moving like one is expected soon.
The NFL reportedly told its club executives they could be brought up to speed on the ins and outs of the new CBA as early as Thursday and then the NFLPA is gathering its leadership presumably for a potential vote on the new deal to end the four-month-old owner-imposed lockout.
This news comes after the lawyers for both sides met on Monday for 8 hours in New York. They are set to meet again Tuesday.
Owners are set to meet in Atlanta on Thursday where a new CBA could be ratified. That would mean the season could begin on time.
But there is still quite a bit to get worked out in order to end the NFL’s first work stoppage since 1987 and the longest one ever. Not the least of which still seems to be a growing concern by the retired players that their needs are being overlooked. Their lack of support could derail a deal if their complaint heads to court. The AP is reporting a deal is on the table that would promise the retired players $1 billion toward their benefits over the next 10 years, which would include $620 million in pension money.
Also the current players are angling to get the $320 million in unpaid benefits from the 2010 season.
In the meantime, the players seem to be feeding into the fans' hopes that the season will be starting soon. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick tweeted Monday: “Sound like we gonna be back to work so soon!!!”
(Photo: Chris Trotman/Getty Images)