It’s been reported today that the Players Association chief DeMaurice Smith and his staff have committed to four days straight of talks with commissioner Roger Goodell and his staff in Minnesota.
The next round of talks were agreed to and confirmed earlier today by ESPN’s Chris Mortenson as the clock continues to tick down toward the projected start of training camp at the end of the month.
The general feeling around the league is that the two sides will most likely have to come to an agreement by the middle of the month if they don’t want to face the loss of games.
If anyone was even considering the possibility of instituting an 18 game season, that will be clearly out the window as the time winds down on negotiations.
Said Goodell to NFL.com today: “We are under court order, as far as what we can discuss. Obviously we’re all working hard, the players and owners were here over the last few days, and De and I were here for the entire meetings also. And it’s complicated and it’s complex, but we’re working hard. We understand the fans’ frustration, but I think both of us feel strongly that we’re going to continue to work hard on it.”
Smith had this to say:
“Someone asked me if I was optimistic — I think we’re both optimistic when we have the right people in the room. We know we’re talking about the right issues, and we’re working hard to get it done. It’s extremely complicated. It requires a lot of hard work by a lot of people. But we’re committed to getting something done. And we’re gonna keep working at it.”