With 90 days to go until the regular-season opener, talks continue to take place between the NFL and NFLPA, NFL Network's Albert Breer reported Friday.
Breer reported that not only do the two sides plan to resume face-to-face meetings next week, but that they have continued communication between the meetings.
The league and players began these covert meetings without lawyers last week in St. Charles, Ill. They continued this week with two days of meetings in Long Island, N.Y.
The New York Post reported Thursday that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith had a "very jovial dinner" on Wednesday night.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft told reporters on Thursday that the two sides are making progress as they work toward a new labor agreement.
The Eagle-Tribune of North Andover, Mass. reported Thursday that the lockout was nearing an end, but representatives from both sides denied the report. Sources told PFW that June 21, when the owners are scheduled to meet in Chicago, could be an important date. Senior editor Eric Edholm had more on the progress being made.
The way we see it
The big positive out of Breer's report is that the two sides are maintaining communication, even when they're not in the same room. We've said it before and we'll say it again — as long as they are talking, that is always a positive sign. Reports of progress are starting to point to July as the month the lockout finally ends, which would likely guarantee a full season. But there also appears to be a long way to go. With that in mind, the more they talk, the better.