An NFL lockout has been avoided.
The NFL owners and NFL Players Association have agreed to a seven day extension on their talks. For those keeping count, this is the second extension. The original deadline was on Thursday night, which was extended 24 hours to Friday night. Now, the deadline is next Friday, March 11 at 5:00 p.m., according to various reports.
This has to be considered good news. Though we're not sure of any tangible signs of progress on any of the key issues, it appears both sides are talking and, at least from our view, willing to compromise.
Mike Silver of Yahoo! Sports recently reported that if this extension comes it would almost certainly mean a new deal is coming. Let's hope that's the case.
One important note in all of this is that the league year as far as player activity is concerned ended on Thursday night. That means, until a new deal is done, there is no more player movement. No more signing, releasing or tendering. It's over.
Once a new deal is struck, free agency will presumably begin at some point.