A three-day conference turned into a one-day summit this week, with the NFL and NFLPA’s latest round of CBA negotiations ending earlier today. The sides also may be moving their target date to have this process wrapped up.
While a new CBA being agreed to before Week 1 of this season seemed like an outlandish aspiration, given the contentious process that led to the 2011 lockout and the rivalry between the league and the union in the years since, that was a reported goal. It may no longer be. The NFL is not pushing for a new CBA to be hammered out before Week 1, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com notes (video link).
Both sides obviously want a resolution earlier, to thus prevent a potential 2021 lockout, but neither seeks to rush into a deal, per Garafolo. The current CBA does not expire until after the 2020 season. The previous reported desire for the league to have this agreement done before the start of the 2019 campaign centered around not wanting CBA talks to overshadow the NFL’s 100th season. That may no longer be possible.
Wednesday marked the fourth formal negotiating session in this CBA discussion cycle, but the parties will reconvene July 29. John Mara, Art Rooney and Robert Kraft took part in these talks; NFLPA president Eric Winston, Richard Sherman and Russell Okung were among those on hand for the players’ side.