ROSEMONT, Ill. (CBS) — For the first time since the NFL lockout, all 32 team owners met in Rosemont on Tuesday, hoping to save this year’s season.
After a five-hour meeting, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said “there’s an urgency for everybody to get this done.”
The clock is ticking. The Chicago Bears are supposed to report to training camp on July 30.
CBS 2’s Jim Williams reports that Goodell and the owners were quick to say this was only an informational meeting to update every team on negotiations with the players.
They wanted to meet in the Chicago area because it was convenient for everyone.
The Bears were represented at Tuesday’s five-hour meeting by chairman George McCaskey and team president Ted Phillips.
They and all the other NFL owners and executives said nothing publicly about negotiations with the players union, nor did they respond to published reports that the owners have offered players 48% of total revenue.
Right now, the players get more than 60 percent of what the league takes in.
Goodell was asked if there is a specific deadline to get a deal done to avoid cutting into training camp or the season itself.
“Is there a drop dead date? There isn’t, but obviously time is moving quickly and we’re fast approaching the training camp period. And I think there’s an urgency for everybody to get this done,” Goodell said. “And it needs to be done in a way that’s fair to the players, and fair to the clubs and most importantly, allows us to continue to have the full 2011 season. That’s what we want, that’s what the fans want. They want football and it’s our job to make that happen.”
Goodell said he’s encouraged that all the principals are talking, but he called the negotiations with the players “complex” and said there’s a lot of work to do.
Negotiations could resume later this week.
The Associated Press reported that Goodell and his labor team plan to meet with players union chief DeMaurice Smith on Wednesday and Thursday in Boston.
According to the AP, under the collective bargaining agreement that owners would offer to players would give players a 48 percent share of all revenues, without the owners taking a $1 billion cut off the top of total revenues.