According to Albert Breer of the NFL Network and Chris Mortensen of ESPN, the NFL lockout could end within the next two weeks. Other NFL reporters such as Peter King and Jim Trotter of SI, have tweeted that the lockout should is likely to end in early July. That seems to be the consensus among folks who are reporting on the matter (Jay Glazer’s report last week, notwithstanding).
But it’s got to be close to over, right? If the lockout can end next week – my guess: Tuesday, July 12 – the league can squeeze in an abbreviated free agency period, do the mini-camp and preseason thing, and start the season can start on time (September 8th).
If nothing happens by the end of next week, Breer writes:
The bottom line: If we make it past July 15, and preseason games are taken off the calendar, the long-term deal the owners put on the table will start looking a lot worse in the short term, and the culture of the sport makes it so Smith would have an exponentially harder time selling the deal if it works only later and not now.
With absolutely nothing happening in sports this month, an end to the lockout in the next 10 days would lead to a frantic free agency period, and the NFL dominating the headlines in July, August, and throughout the Fall.
And yes, I’m well aware that the Major League All-Star game is July 12.