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BlitzburghRockCity
06-14-2011, 11:28 AM
The NFL has asked owners to keep their schedules open next week, when the league holds meetings in Chicago, NFL Network reporter Albert Breer confirmed Tuesday.
The owners are scheduled to meet June 21, and the memo from the league asked for flexibility by the owners in case the meeting spills into Tuesday night or Wednesday. That has fueled speculation that perhaps the league and the NFL Players Association are making progress in their negotiations toward an agreement that would end the three-month-old lockout.

Last week, the sides concluded two days of what sources described as "very serious talks" (http://www.nfl.com/goto?id=09000d5d820375bc) in an attempt to build off previous secret negotiations in suburban Chicago. It is believed last week's talks took place in a Long Island, N.Y., hotel.
According to sources, these meetings are expected to happen frequently for the foreseeable future and NFL spokesman Greg Aiello confirmed the negotiations would eventually resume.


"NFL owners and players have engaged in further confidential discussions before Chief Magistrate Judge Boylan this week," Aiello posted on his Twitter account this past Wednesday. "Those discussions will continue."


According to Aiello, NFL attendees at last week's meetings included Commissioner Roger Goodell and owners Jerry Richardson (Carolina Panthers (http://www.nfl.com/teams/carolinapanthers/profile?team=CAR)), Clark Hunt (Kansas City Chiefs (http://www.nfl.com/teams/kansascitychiefs/profile?team=KC)), Robert Kraft (New England Patriots (http://www.nfl.com/teams/newenglandpatriots/profile?team=NE)), John Mara (New York Giants (http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkgiants/profile?team=NYG)) and Dean Spanos (San Diego Chargers (http://www.nfl.com/teams/sandiegochargers/profile?team=SD)). All five owners are members of the NFL's labor committee.


The players were represented by NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith and NFLPA executive committee members Kevin Mawae (president), Domonique Foxworth (http://www.nfl.com/players/domoniquefoxworth/profile?id=FOX813566) (Baltimore Ravens (http://www.nfl.com/teams/baltimoreravens/profile?team=BAL)), Tony Richardson (http://www.nfl.com/players/tonyrichardson/profile?id=RIC389026) (New York Jets (http://www.nfl.com/teams/newyorkjets/profile?team=NYJ)), Jeff Saturday (http://www.nfl.com/players/jeffsaturday/profile?id=SAT652599) (Indianapolis Colts (http://www.nfl.com/teams/indianapoliscolts/profile?team=IND)) and Mike Vrabel (http://www.nfl.com/players/mikevrabel/profile?id=VRA088990) (Kansas City Chiefs).

Goodell later held a conference call with season ticket holders of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (http://www.nfl.com/teams/tampabaybuccaneers/profile?team=TB), his 19th such call with NFL ticket holders this offseason. According to a Twitter post from Aiello, Goodell told fans that "talks are going on. Both sides are working hard to reach an agreement. That's a positive step for everybody."
"We are going to continue to work at it," Goodell continued. "I believe both sides want to find solutions. I'm hopeful we're going to be successful. It's the objective of everybody involved with the NFL to play a full 2011 season."


The secret meetings in suburban Chicago lasted three days, running up to Friday's hearing at the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis on the NFL's appeal of a lockout-lifting injunction granted to the players by a district court. After that set of talks, the league and players put out a joint statement.


"The parties met pursuant to court mediation," the statement said. "Owners and players were engaged in confidential discussions before Chief Magistrate Judge Boylan. The court has ordered continued confidentiality of the mediation sessions."


NFL.com (http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d82050114/article/sign-of-progress-owners-asked-to-clear-schedules-next-week?module=HP_headlines)

BlitzburghRockCity
06-14-2011, 11:30 AM
Perhaps there is finally some good news on the horizon. At this point it's crunch time. If they don't get a deal in place by the end of the June the chances of the season starting on time get worse and worse.

If teams could start the offseason process by the beginning of July they would have about a month to sign players and get to training camp on time.

LatrobePA
06-14-2011, 11:30 AM
Getting close it sounds...

K Train
06-14-2011, 11:38 AM
things were bound to heat up eventually, theres too much need on both sides for a season

BlitzburghRockCity
06-14-2011, 01:07 PM
At this point it's still speculation as to exactly what the memo really means, but common sense would say that they feel it's crunch time. Either get it done or risk starting the season late. Right now nothing has suffered in terms of players paychecks, and if that starts happening it will get real ugly real fast. The rookies though, those poor guys have missed out on months of workouts. Learning an NFL playbook is hard enough when you have months to do it, let alone in just weeks.

LatrobePA
06-14-2011, 03:24 PM
The owners make the same money for preseason games as they do for regular ones, hell yea it's in their best interest to get this bitch started!!

BlitzburghRockCity
06-14-2011, 06:14 PM
We'll be talking to Ken Laird about this tonight on Blitzburgh Radio, I'm anxious to get his thoughts on this news. Hopefully it's not just another let down and we end up at the end of next week no more close to a deal than we were previously.