Two NFL "power brokers" trying to break deadlock - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Two NFL "power brokers" trying to break deadlock between owners, players


MINNEAPOLIS (KTTC/AP) -- NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith flew to Florida together to speak to rookies after opening four days of labor talks in Minnesota.

Spokesmen for the league and the players' association confirmed Tuesday night that the two power brokers were on the same plane from Minnesota to address the NFLPA's rookie symposium. first reported that both Goodell and Smith were on their way to the joint appearance. Smith asked Goodell to speak at the symposium on Wednesday morning at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Sarasota, Fla., and the commissioner agreed.

Both men are planning to leave Florida later Wednesday to fly back to Minneapolis and continue the labor talks, believed to be scheduled through Friday.

Two people familiar with the situation tell The Associated Press that negotiating teams for NFL owners and players are in Minneapolis and expected to resume talks aimed at ending a lockout now in its fourth month.

Although it is not known when the sides would meet face-to-face, representatives for both groups arrived in Minneapolis on Monday. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because no labor developments are being made public.

It was not immediately known who would be representing each side, although last week players were told the next set of talks would involve Commissioner Goodell, NFLPA executive director Smith, several owners and players.

On Monday, a small group of players met with their attorneys in Minneapolis.

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