The Washington Post is reporting that CBA negotiations between NFL owners and players are going well, and that a 17-game season is set to be among the agreements in any new deal.
The additional game may be a neutral site game in the vein of the London games, thereby giving the NFL an opportunity to milk the British for money every week of the season, or perhaps expand the series to other venues that have been used in the past, such as Mexico City.
The Post indicates the owners are willing to make some concessions to get the extra game, but there is no confirmation given that the long held idea of reducing preseason games is the thing that will happen. From a practical sense, this seems to be the best idea, as preseason football is mostly tedious and creates too many situations where major injuries can happen in a sport that doesn’t feature guaranteed contracts for anybody but the top tier. And even then.
Reportedly, the negotiations are also including a less punitive marijuana policy, an adjustment of the on-field disciplinary system to install a neutral arbitrator in place of Roger Goodell, and updates to the rookie contract system, which the post suggests may be tied to the regular season increase.
Playoff expansion is also being bandied about, but that is not something that the NFLPA needs to sign off on.
The Post suggests that the negotiations are going so well that an agreement could be in place before the Super Bowl. We’ll see. Stay tuned.