Owners, players huddle for third straight week

Clandestine meetings that began in suburban Chicago at the beginning of the month resumed again today on Maryland’s eastern shore, according to Albert Breer of the NFL Network.

Key NFL owners have huddled with NFLPA boss DeMaurice Smith and players again, the third set of secret meetings in as many weeks, and the surest sign a deal could be in place in coming weeks.

Perhaps the sides took to heart what Judge Kermit Bye of the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals said at the close of their hearing June 4 when he urged the sides to settle the matter themselves. It’s these face-to-face meetings which are believed to be creating real momentum, but both sides remain silent.

Owners have a meeting scheduled for Chicago next Tuesday at which point they could discuss the progress made in labor talks with the lockout now entering its fourth month.

A deal needs to be in place in the relative near future in order to ensure training camps can open on time following a player acquisition period.

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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