The statement issued by the NFL upon conclusion of mediation indicates several things about the offer that was made Friday by the league at noon ET, and to which the union responded four hours later.
Among other things, the NFL offered to keep the current scheduling format (16 regular-season games and four preseason games) for at least two years, with any subsequent changes subject to the approval of the league and the union.
The first part isn’t a surprise, since the length of the regular-season wasn’t going to change before 2013. (The league would have had no way to cram two extra games into the current schedule, since the dates of the next two Super Bowls are set in stone.) But the league’s proposal also contained an offer to push the entire length-of-season debate back by two years, necessarily forcing the NFL to make a fairly major concession when the time comes to try to grow from 16 to 18 games.
The offer also included a reduction in the offseason workout program from 14 weeks to nine and a reduction in the OTA workouts from fourteen weeks to 10. Moreover, the league offered “significant reductions in the amount of contact in practices.”
Whether the offer can be put back together remains to be seen. Though the league will huff and puff that it was a one-time only proposal (indeed, the league undoubtedly prefaced the offer by saying it applies today only), the league will quickly put those terms back together again whenever progress again is made.