Good morning, New York Giants fans! This morning's notebook is dedicated exclusively to NFL Lockout discussion, pretty much a necessity with the good vibes and talk of a deal within 2-3 weeks that emanated from the owners' meetings in Chicago on Tuesday.
So, let's get started.
Goodell issued a statement following the conclusion of Tuesday's meetings. Here is part of it:
What is your level of confidence that you will be able to accomplish an agreement?
We’ve got a lot of work to do and we’ve got to do it right. The agreement that we’re focusing on and negotiating has got to address several issues. Those issues are complex and it needs to be done in a way that is fair to the players, fair to the clubs, and most importantly allows us to continue to have that full 2011 football season. That’s what we want, that’s what the fans want, they want football and it’s our job to try to make that happen.
On there being much discussion in the meeting among the owners:
You’ve never been in an owners meeting before…listen I’ve said it before I think anytime you’re dealing with the NFL and the 32 clubs with 1,800 players, you’re going to have different perspectives and different elements that people might not see eye to eye on. But I think the objective is to get something that works for everybody. It’s not what everybody wants, it’s what everybody needs to reach an agreement that’s fair and balanced and is going to work to make our game better and to continue to grow our game.
Traces of a deal? | National Football Post
NFP's Andrew Brandt breaks down some of the emerging parameters of a potential new CBA.
Lockout: Sources reveal details of proposed NFL CBA - ESPN Dallas
Here are comments from a couple of NFL owners following Tuesday's meetings:
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft: "a lot of hard work to do ... t's good that things are moving in the right direction."
"This is the season to get a deal," Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay said before entering the conference room where representatives from all 32 teams were being updated by Goodell and his negotiating committee. "I think the logic that you're pushing on both sides is saying why get a deal Oct. 1, or whenever, when you could have had July 7, or whatever."
It Is What It Is " Reports: NFL players and owners will continue talks this week in Boston-area suburb
The NFL owners and players will reportedly meet on Wednesday and Thursday this week in a suburb of Boston in the latest attempt to bring an end to the lockout.
There were no formal votes taken Tuesday, not even the kind of unofficial "straw polls" that are a big part of such meetings, but one owner acknowledged he was "kind of counting noses," and discerned four or five opponents "at most." Approval of a CBA requires a three-quarters vote of the membership, meaning that just nine "no" votes are needed to squelch a deal.
Said one NFC owner: "The purpose of the meeting was to get things out on the table. But it sure looks like there's nothing close to nine (no) votes."
Few ventured a guess as to timeframe, but several owners seemed to be operating under the assumption that an accord could come in the next 2-3 weeks. None of the owners who spoke to The Sports Xchange would estimate when veteran free agency might begin, but all agreed it was helpful that several teams brought general managers, football operations directors, or cap specialists to Chicago, and that the so-called "football men" were allowed to offer their views on potential timeframes.
What's going on is that substantial progress has been made the past three weeks in court-supervised negotiations between owners and players. In fact, there was so much that Irsay said he believed there could be a settlement "in a couple of weeks" -- or roughly around the July 4 deadline he mentioned last month as critical to keeping the season intact.
I'm not sure about the date, but I am sure owners believe something can happen by the middle of the month because I'm sure they're determined not to sacrifice games and the gazillions of dollars that go with them. What they're trying to figure out now is how to get there while gaining a collective bargaining agreement that is better for them than the 2006 agreement.
So, maybe the Giants will be in Albany this August after all.