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Latest lockout news: NFLPA chief DeMaurice Smith reportedly holding conference call Thursday night with player reps

07.21.11 at 12:56 pm ET

Here’s the latest lockout news, as of early Thursday afternoon:

NFLPA chief DeMaurice Smith has asked player representatives from all 32 teams to be available for a conference call Thursday night, according to Mike Lombardi from the NFL Network. (The players have yet to sign off on the details of the new plan.) Meanwhile, owners began meetings in Atlanta at approximately 10 a.m. and are still meeting in hopes of ratifying a “global settlement” on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. According to multiple reports, the owners will leave Atlanta Thursday evening and fly to Boston for the funeral of Myra Kraft, the wife of Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft.

However, even if both sides are able to sign off on an agreement on Thursday, there remains a question about how quickly league business could begin once an agreement is reached. The owners are hoping for an immediate restart, while the NFLPA could run into a snag because they need to re-constitute as a union, a process that could reportedly take as long as two weeks. (The union was decertified in March when the lockout was put in place.) One report indicated that the NFLPA would need to mail out and receive voting cards from a majority of the roughly 1,900 NFL players.

Read More: DeMaurice Smith, lockout, Mike Lombardi, Myra Kraft



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