By the end of the day, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and NFLPA* Executive Director DeMaurice Smith may both preside over votes of the men they work for that will bring an end to the lockout. But they still have a few remaining issues to resolve before they can do that.
ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio reports that Goodell and Smith had one-on-one conversations both Wednesday night and Thursday morning to iron out those remaining issues. Both men are still hoping that their respective sides will vote on a new deal to end the lockout today.
Smith declined to offer a prediction on what would happen, but he came across as positive about his interactions with Goodell.
“I know everyone wants to be an expert and say they know exactly what’s going on behind closed doors and when this is going to happen,” Smith told ESPN on Wednesday night. “Both sides know where they stand. Both sides continue to work very intensively, as we have for several weeks. I’m not into the prediction business and I’m not about to get into details, but their side knows what our deal is and, again, we know where they stand.”
To reach a new deal, 24 of the 32 teams would have to vote to approve it, and a majority of the 1,900 or so active players would also have to OK it. It’s not clear which side will vote first; the players were expected to vote on Wednesday but haven’t voted yet.