So far, this NFL Lock-out has been a huge drain on the fans this year. There’s been no off-season trades, no free agents signings, and nothing to get very excited about.
The players don’t seem to care as most of them are enjoying life laying out on private beaches, living large at night clubs and casinos, or spending countless hours on the internet chatting with friends or having fun playing online blackjack or poker.
The owners haven’t been in any real rush to get a deal done either, while the union just bides their time urging their players top play hardball rather than football.
What a mess…
Well… From the “believe it or not” files, there might just be a breakthrough in the negotiations. Citing sources familiar with negotiations, ESPN is reporting that sentiment is growing that an NFL labor agreement can be ratified on July 21 at the league meetings.
Essentially, this means that a handshake deal could be in the offing in the next few days that would allow teams to begin preparing for training camp while the fine details are ironed out.
It also means that the pre-season opener scheduled for Thursday, August 11th will not be wiped out as so many have feared. The Cowboys will play the Denver Broncos to kick off the pre-season schedule.
According to ESPN, the only game that could still be in jeopardy is the August 7th Hall of Fame Game between the Chicago Bears and St. Louis Rams.
The big issues that they are still trying to work out is finalizing a new rookie wage scale which could see those waged get cut in half or even more.
Jerry Jones has said that one of the reasons he stayed in the first round this year, taking offensive tackle Tyron Smith with the No. 9 overall pick, was in anticipation of a revised rookie wage scale, and he is counting on not having to pay him the $30-$40 million dollars it would have cost the team under the old rules.
As far as the rookie wages go, I am clearly on the owners side on that issue. So anyway, it looks like things are finally starting to move and that it won’t be long until we see our boys back on the gridiron getting banged up and dirty.