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NFL, NFLPA deal expected to be signed ‘hopefully today’

NFL, NFLPA

Last Friday, after weeks of negotiations, the NFL and NFL Players Association came to an agreement on a revised Collective Bargaining Agreement customized for conducting an NFL season during COVID-19.

With teams gathering for training camp, paperwork is yet to be finalized, per Pro Football Talk. However, a source with knowledge of the proceedings expects the agreement to be signed “hopefully today.”

If the is deal cemented on Friday, that would set the deadline for players to opt out of the 2020 season for Friday, August 7.

“We have worked collaboratively to develop a comprehensive set of protocols designed to minimize risk for fans, players, and club and league personnel,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “These plans have been guided by the medical directors of the NFL and the NFLPA and have been reviewed and endorsed by independent medical and public health experts.”

The updated CBA allows 16-man practice squads, includes various opt-out stipulations, and eliminates preseason games for 2020, among other details.

“High-risk” players who opt out will receive a $350,000 stipend and their contract will toll. Players voluntarily skipping the season will receive an $150,000 salary advance and their contract will toll, too. More players than expected have already opted out.

Training camp will also operate differently. Under the CBA, there will be a 20-day “ramp up” and 14 padded practices, at most. Helmets and full-team practices can begin after a few weeks.

“The season will undoubtedly present new and additional challenges, but we are committed to playing a safe and complete 2020 season, culminating with the Super Bowl,” the commissioner stated.