The league’s owners have gathered in Chicago for meetings aimed at building a consensus as to the current negotiations for a new labor deal. Originally a one-day meeting scheduled for Tuesday, the owners had been told to pack a bag in the event that the meetings extend into Wednesday.
Apparently, that bag-packing directive applied to the front end of the session as well. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the meetings actually began on Monday, with at least one and possibly more team officials summoned to participate.
The information blackout largely has been effective. With that tight lid on details, here’s what we’re currently hearing.
The thinking is that Commissioner Roger Goodell will be trying to persuade the owners to do a win-win deal at a time when there’s a belief by many owners that the players will take the last, best offer made during the current phase of talks. The concern, we’re told, is that one (or more) of the owners will argue that, if the players are prepared to take the best offer the owners make now, an even better deal for the league can be finagled by forcing the players to miss a few game checks.
As the source explained it, more than a few owners believe the league has a hammer — and that the league should use it.
Goodell is expected to urge those owners to consider the best interests of the game, since it will end the labor unrest without doing any significant damage to the league. Whether he can pull it off will go a long way toward ending the lockout and bringing back football.
Here’s hoping that he does.