From Peter King comes some pretty big news on the labor front:
DeMaurice Smith, the National Football League Players Association executive director, asked NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to speak at the NFLPA rookie symposium, and Goodell agreed.
The commissioner's appearance is scheduled for Wednesday morning at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Sarasota, Fla. The symposium, titled The Business of Football: Rookie Edition, is being held at the IMG Academy in nearby Bradenton, Fla.
Goodell and Smith, in Minneapolis on Tuesday for the first of four days of labor meetings, left the Twin Cities on the same flight Tuesday night. The plan is for Goodell to speak at the symposium around 8 a.m. Wednesday, then Smith and Goodell immediately will fly back to Minneapolis and reconvene meetings with Judge Arthur J. Boylan after lunchtime.
This is simply fantastic news, especially considering how contentious things were between the two sides as little as a month ago.
Despite what King writes toward the end of his article about a player rep saying a deal is "not imminent", the word around the proverbial campfire is that both sides think a deal can be struck by the end of next week.
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