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Will it get done?
June 14, 2011 - Mike McLain
The NFL and the and the players' union are reaching a criticial stage in the lockout that began in early March.
If the two sides don't get serious about the issues that are preventing an agreement, it's possible owners will lose their two home preseason games. Worse yet is the possibility of a shortened regular season or perhaps no season at all.
Call me an internal optimist, but I think the problems will be resolved soon. There's too much money on the table to ruin a good thing. The NFL owns the sporting public like no other sport. Cooler heads will eventually understand that reality and get the job done.
The situation is kind of like the way teams deal with negotiations of rookie contracts. The draft is held in late April, but the serious work of getting the rookies into the fold doesn't begin until July. Usually, one or two rookies miss the early stages of training camp.
There's never a doubt that a deal with the players will get done. The problem is that teams wait until other teams begin signing rookies, which then begins the slotting process when crunching the financial numbers.
The owners and players probably have known where the common ground is from the start of the lockout, but both sides have been too stubborn to admit it. That should change quickly when the realization of missed games and, more importantly, missed paychecks sets in.
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