The NFL's Collective Bargaining Agreement is set to expire at 11:59 this evening. That puts us at about 16 hours away from a possible NFL lockout. Barring an extension on that expiration date, which could buy the NFL and NFLPA more negotiating time to get a new CBA agreed to, we're staring the possibility of a year without football squarely in the face.
The key issues that still must be addressed before a new deal is in place: how to allocate $9 billion in annual revenue between 32 teams and their players; an expanded regular season schedule featuring 18 games; the logistics of a rookie wage scale; and benefits for retired players.
The NFL and NFLPA will continue over a week's worth of mediated negotiation sessions on Thursday in a last-ditch attempt to get a deal done. In the likely event that a deal cannot be reached, and if the two sides cannot agree on a deadline extension to continue negotiations, you will probably see the NFLPA decertify by day's end, and the NFL lock the players out a bit later.
Buckle up, football fans.