Could we be in the final days of the NFL lockout?
I sure hope so.
The last two days of negotiations have taken place in New York and it featured only the lawyers from each side. Apparently the lawyers were huddling up and working out the legal language of a potential contract. That way, if and when a deal is reached, the process of getting the paperwork out of the way will be relatively painless. Word is that the lawyers put in 11 hours yesterday, so hopefully they got done what they needed to get done.
Today, the negotiating teams will return to the table to hopefully punch this thing into the endzone. There have been some interesting reports lately that seem to indicate the target for ending this thing really is this week. For instance, ESPN reported yesterday that U.S. Magistrate Judge Arthur Boylan, who is mediating the negotiations per Judge Nelsons order, is set to start a vacation Saturday. Various sources have reported that both sides have warmed to Boylan and that he is a big part of the recent progress int he talks. Hopefully his impending vacation, coupled with the fact that the clock is running out on training camp start dates, has both sides determined to put an end to this nightmare by the close of business on Friday.
If that is the case, we could see free agency as soon as next week. Cross your fingers and hope it works this time!