NEW YORK - Whether it was the game-ending call that ignited indignation across the nation or something else, the NFL and its locked out referees are back at the negotiating table and making progress.
So much progress, that reports of a pending deal are circulating, one that could put the league's regular refs back on the field in time for this weekend's games.
ESPN is reporting that agreement in principle is at hand, according to one source familiar to talks, although NFL owners have postured with a "no more compromise" stance.
Although league sources said it would take a week to get the locked-out officials on the field, the NFL Referees Association tells ESPN that its 121 member referees have been trained on the new rules implemented last season, have already passed physicals or are prepared to pass physicals immediately.
Sources say both sides have made concessions on money, pension plans and a referee training squad.
The reported breakthrough comes wo days after a controversial call cost the Green Bay Packers a win.
A person familiar with the situation tells The Associated Press that the NFL and its locked-out officials were meeting Wednesday. The sides met for about 14 hours starting Tuesday into early Wednesday. They broke for a few hours before reconvening in an attempt to resolve the dispute and end the firestorm over the use of replacement refs.
KARE 11 will have the latest details as they become available.
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