Multiple reports say that our long national nightmare -- aka the NFL Lockout of 2011 -- is just hours away from ending. The players and owners were said to have burned the late night oil (most likely florescent oil and not whale oil) and hammered out their final remaining contract points.
The NFLPA has scheduled a conference call for 11:00 am ET with their Executive Committee and the 32 player reps to approve the deal. Shortly after, sometime Monday, would be press conference to officially end the dispute that has caused America to miss all of zero regular season football game, no NFL preseason games and likely just a couple of days of training camp. How did we survive?
From there things will start happening fast. ESPN reports that the new league year would officially start August 2 at 4:00 p.m. ET. But even before that the one thing fans were denied, free agency and trades, would resume.
• Teams can sign their own free agents and begin talking with other unrestricted free agents Monday afternoon.
• Teams can begin signing unrestricted free agents Tuesday at noon ET but those contracts would not take effect until Aug. 2.
• Teams can begin talking trades Monday afternoon. Any trades would become official on Saturday, July 30.
Training camps would start on a staggered schedule with 10 teams reporting on Wednesday, 10 on Thursday and 10 more on Friday. The Cardinals (allegedly) are in the Wednesday group on that schedule.
You have to wonder though if they will actually "start camp" that fast. There's a lot of logistics to get set up before the big boys actually strap on the pads and start hitting each other. Arizona Republic's Kent Somers has more on the timing.
azcentral.com blogs - Kent Somers - A guess at when camp opens in Flagstaff
The team is packed for Flagstaff, however, and coach Ken Whisenhunt plans to go, even though it likely will mean starting practice without a full 90-man roster.
The details are fluid but much should be revealed to the patient fan today. Stay tuned and enjoy some of these links we've prepared for your morning consumption.
- Twitter / @SBJLizMullen: The NFLPA has confirmed th ...The NFLPA has confirmed that a conference call is scheduled for today at 11am between the Executive Committee and the 32 player reps.
- NFL Lockout Deal Is Done, Drew Brees Reportedly Tells Saints Players - SBNation.com
- NFL.com news: Agreement in place; players will vote once document is done According to multiple sources involved, the deal is not 100 percent done yet, with the final document just completed about two hours prior a scheduled conference call with the 32 team player reps at 11 a.m. ET. Legal teams are proofing and fixing the details. That’s important, because the language of a completed deal is what caused some of the hang-ups that occurred last week.
- NFL transactions may start Monday, source says - ESPN That included how the more than $9 billion in annual league revenues will be divided (about 53 percent to owners and 47 percent to players over the next decade; the old CBA resulted in nearly a 50-50 split); a per-club cap of about $120 million for salary and bonuses in 2011 -- and at least that in 2012 and 2013 -- plus about $22 million for benefits; a salary system to rein in spending on first-round draft picks; and unrestricted free agency for most players after four seasons.
- Arizona Cardinals 'Checklist' For Once The Lockout Is Over - Revenge of the Birds The Arizona Cardinals will have to be swift in their actions, signing players that can help them towards another NFC West crown during the 2011-12 season...going to give you a breakdown (in no particular order) of the things the Arizona Cardinals need to do in order to regain some success.
- NFL Free Agents: Why Ike Taylor Could Be A Bad Signing - Revenge of the Birds The category that contains Taylor is the "Veterans Steelers Defender" group. According to the article, in the last ten years, defender after defender leaving Pittsburgh has failed to make an impact. Of 14 such examples, eight of these players lasted one season or less with their new teams.