Lawyers, staffs huddle today as a deal nears

As the NFL moves closer to a new collective bargaining agreement that could be ratified Thursday at the owners meeting in Atlanta, the principals involved will step back from the negotiating table today.

Instead, lawyers and staffs representing both sides will hunker down and work on crafting language for a tentative deal that could have free agency starting in a little more than a week.

Players struck a victory on Friday when the owners stopped pushing for the right of first refusal, something that would have prohibited some players from achieving true free agency. It’s been reported that financial parameters for the deal have been determined, including the salary cap and a rookie pay scale.

Now, it’s on to smaller issues that should be ironed out in a matter of days in order to preserve the entire regular season – on time – and save most or nearly all of the preseason.

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

Upcoming Games

Aug 5th, 8:00 PM

Dallas

Pittsburgh

@

Aug 12th, 7:30 PM

Washington

New England

@

Aug 12th, 7:30 PM

Pittsburgh

Philadelphia

@