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NFLPA Cancels Agent Meeting At Combine, Offering Sign Of Hope In Labor Talks
Published February 23, 2011
OWNERS ABSENT FROM MEETINGS: CBSSPORTS.com's Mike Freeman cited a source as saying that "no owner has been present in the room during the five days of negotiations" to date. Freeman: "In a way, it's a smart strategy. It keeps things from getting heated since owners tend to lose their minds in these types of negotiations. ... But it is extremely odd. In my 20 years of covering the sport and more than a few labor issues, when the union and league met in the past to resolve labor differences, owners were always present." A source reiterated that "progress has been made, albeit a small amount" (CBSSPORTS.com, 2/22). SI.com's Peter King wrote "one of the most important things in negotiating a deal between contentious parties is the ability to talk frankly, without fear of words being twisted and taken out of context." Jets S and alternate player rep Jim Leonhard: "Everyone was starting to get frustrated with the banter going back and forth. ... It's better to let the negotiating process work its course" (SI.com, 2/22).