Posted by Gregg Rosenthal on July 16, 2011, 6:35 PM EDT
The owners and players will meet again after all.
Short after a report surfaced that the two sides were unlikely to need face-to-face sessions again, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports the two sides will indeed meet again on Monday and Tuesday.
It appears the meetings will be to go over some issues we haven’t heard a lot about before. (We recommend reading Florio’s post on this possibility from Friday night.)
Mort reports players want $320 million in lost benefits from the 2010 season restored. They also want the franchise tag to only be allowed once per player, instead of being able to use it in successive years. (That could be a nod to Brady antitrust plaintiff Logan Mankins, among others.) Workman’s compensation is also reportedly an issue, as are the two hanging lawsuits. (The antitrust suit and the television revenue.)
This news seems to come as a small surprise to some. NFL outside counsel Jeff Pash told Albert Breer of NFL Network that the “principles” did their job, and that the CBA was in the hands of the lawyers now. The league’s network reported no further face-to-face talks were expected to be necessary.
Something clearly changed in the meantime. We don’t think there is any reason for fans need to panic, but it’s a reminder that it’s not a deal until it’s a deal.
Consider this report lukewarm water.
UPDATE: More Mort: “Main point : NFL/NFLPA need more hard negotiations on unresolved issues when hoping tough stuff was over.” He says there is still optimism for a deal by Tuesday or Wednesday.