Here’s the latest on how we think Monday’s events will go, in light of all the reports the players will vote to recommend ratification of the CBA.
Peter King of SI.com reports NFLPA* reps will have a conference call at 11 a.m. ET to approve the deal. That would come after the Executive Committee has met. Albert Breer of NFL.com says it will happen “by noon.”
There remains debate about when free agency could possibly start. Drew Brees said in an e-mail to his teammates Sunday night that full free agency could start Tuesday. Mark Maske of the Washington Post and Breer both say 6 p.m. ET on Friday is more likely. Jay Glazer believed it would be Friday or Saturday.
Then again, Brees also said “don’t believe anything you read or hear in the media,” who has “no clue” and “only prints what sells.” (Don’t give away our strategy!)
The good news is that all labor-related speculation could officially be over by this afternoon and we’ll find out the truth then.
UPDATE: Judy Battista of the New York Times hears the same Friday timeline. ESPN’s Adam Schefter hears that Brees’ timeline, with unrestricted free agency starting Tuesday, will be voted on. We give up.
One thing everyone agrees on: 10 teams will report Wednesday, 10 teams Thursday, 10 on Friday, and two teams on Saturday. The timing depends on each team’s first preseason game.