The NFL and NFLPA legal and financial teams are working through the weekend on what could be the framework for a new collective bargaining agreement. Major issues seemed to be resolved by the day over the past week of negotiations and some believe an agreement in principle could be reached next Tuesday. The lifting of the NFL lockout is no longer a question of if, but when.
Announcing an agreement in principle is just the first step towards resuming normal football activities. The owners would have the opportunity to ratify the agreement at a meeting in Atlanta next Thursday. The players would also have to vote on the deal and the pending lawsuits would need to be resolved. With an agreement announcement early next week and a timely resolution to the items listed above, it is expected that free agency could open as soon as July 25 – 72 hours after an exclusive negotiating window for teams to sign their own free agents.
Stay tuned for all the full details, but at least rest this weekend knowing that football is just around the corner.