Potential labor deal coming down to the wire

It’s down to the nitty gritty for a labor deal between NFL owners and players.

In order for the majority of training camps to open on time (it’s already been assured the Chicago Bears and St. Louis Rams will not report Friday) a deal needs to come very soon. The owners meeting will take place today at a hotel near the Atlanta airport and the top executives in the NFLPA will huddle again in Washington.

NFL vice president Jeff Pash said Wednesday night that he expects both sides to take a vote on the tentative agreement today but he cautioned against thinking the lockout will be lifted today and it will be business-as-usual again in the NFL.

“I think it’s probably aggressive to think that it can be done tomorrow, but it could be done in a relatively short period of time, we think,” Pash told reporters Wednesday night.

It was reported Wednesday night that the major hangup – perhaps the only hangup – is resolving litigation issues. Specifically, demands some players in the Tom Brady lawsuit vs. the NFL may or may not have. Mike Freeman of CBS Sports reports New England Patriots guard Logan Mankins and San Diego Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson are seeking $10 million each. Jackson, however, has denied this.

Albert Breer of the NFL Network reports it’s simply down to hashing out the lawsuits.

“At the point, it's about settling the lawsuits. Rules/structure of the league aren't the issue,” Breer tweeted.

Maybe it’s a terrific day for some settlements. Or maybe the lawsuit will be dropped completely. Stay tuned. We think it will all be over soon. We hope.

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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