The owners took a break at the NFL owner’s meetings in Atlanta around 5 p.m. ET. At the time, NFL Network said they were told it would be a 10-15 minute break.
It has been 75 minutes and counting thus far, with a lot of very rich men milling about without much to do. (UPDATE: They are now eating dinner on NFL Network. Riveting stuff.)
The reason for the wait? ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that NFLPA* Chief DeMaurice Smith and Roger Goodell are on the horn trying to come up with a way to lift the lockout if both sides approve a deal Thursday night. The owners were scheduled to vote by 5:30 p.m. ET.
It’s anticipated that both the owners and players will approve a deal when they get a chance to vote. But that doesn’t completely ensure the lockout will be lifted.
The hanging question seems to be how the two sides will handle the issue of recertification by the former player’s union. The players reportedly want to do it at training camp or by mail. The owners sound uncomfortable lifting the lockout before the union recertifying.
And around and around we go.
UPDATE: Colts owner Jim Irsay told reporters the owners hope to vote by 8 p.m. ET.