As was reported throughout Thursday afternoon, the NFL and NFLPA will resume negotiations on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement on Friday - and they will do so with the help of a federal mediator.
The two sides agreed to meet with mediator George H. Cohen, director of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. As mediator, Cohen does not have any formal authority in the negotiation process; he can make suggestions and reveal points of weakness as each side makes their arguments, but ultimately, the NFL and NFLPA will need to get this done.
Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com, citing a league source, also reported Thursday evening that the two sides have tentatively agreed to meet for seven straight days in an effort to get a new deal in place before the current CBA's March 4 expiration date. Time will tell if that agreement comes to fruition, however, as the two sides have already canceled scheduled negotiation sessions once this month.