Updated 7:40 p.m. ET Tuesday
NFL owners and players resumed talks on Tuesday, as the two sides work toward a new labor agreement, NFL Network's Albert Breer reported. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that the meeting took place at a New York City hotel and included commissioner Roger Goodell, NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith, Chief Magistrate Judge Arthur Boylan and select players.
The two sides met last week in a Chicago suburb. The NFL and NFL players association released the following joint statement about those discussions:
"The parties met pursuant to court mediation. Owners and players were engaged in confidential discussions before Chief Magistrate Judge Boylan. The court has ordered continued confidentiality of the mediation sessions."
The U.S. Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments from both sides on June 3 in the league's appeal to Judge Susan Nelson's decision to end the lockout, which began March 11. Presiding Judge Kermit Bye urged the two sides to negotiate on their own and that their decision would be one that "neither side will like."
"I think it's fair to say anytime you have dialogue directly, that's going to lead to progress," Goodell told reporters last Friday. "I think we need more of that. As you've heard me say many times, I think this is going to be solved through bargaining, not through litigation. So (the Chicago meeting) was a positive sign for us."
The way we see it
While we don't know details about what was discussed or what progress was made, we can still conclude that this is a good sign. The judges want the two sides to get this done on their own, and it could benefit the owners and players to get a deal done before a decision is rendered. Keeping the talks secret also shows both sides are serious. These meetings need to continue.