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NFL Lockout 2011: Deadline Pushed Another Seven Days

The NFL owners and NFL Players Association have agreed to extend the deadline of the CBA expiration for 7 days. This comes just one day after the two sides agreed to push the deadline back 24 hours. Previously, the CBA was set to expire last night.

As we noted earlier, the fact that the sides have agreed to extend the deadline to keep talking is a positive sign that progress is being made. If the general framework for a deal were not coming together, there would be no reason to extend the deadline. These sides have been talking for two years with neither budging, so if there was still no budging the last two days they would never think another week would help. So clearly, there’s been progress.

There’s obviously still major issues to be hammered out, but this extension does appear to be a sign that an agreement could get done sometime in the near future. Sources from both sides told Yahoo! sports writer Michael Silver as much yesterday.

Sources on both sides of the conflict agreed on one basic premise: If enough progress is made that another short-term CBA extension – perhaps a week, perhaps two – is announced by Friday night, the players and owners will almost certainly be headed for a settlement that will result in a multi-year deal before the end of this month.

It should be worth noting that this extension merely allows them more time to negotiate. It does not extend the signing period for players that are currently free agents. So as of now, those players are in a holding pattern and unable to sign anywhere. All the extension means right now is that the sides aren’t giving up and bringing the issue to court, it doesn’t mean it’s business as usual in the NFL.