While both sides in the NFL's labor dispute have put out a lot of rhetoric about wanting to get a deal done, but the over the past week or so, I think we've finally the sentiment actually shift toward getting a deal. I think the players and owners are starting to realize that we're in crunch time here.
Some players are starting to say they've had enough, including Chargers QB Philip Rivers.
I'm about to reach my limit, I'm going stir crazy," Rivers told me. "I think it's just unfortunate we've come to this. The game is at an all-time high. I'm not talking about revenue. I'm talking about popularity. We're essentially putting all of that at risk. I don't mean just players. I mean owners, everyone. I didn't think we’d ever be here. I'm still shocked we're at this point.
"I grew up loving football as a game and I still do. The business side of it never appealed to me but I can't be a hypocrite. The business side has been beneficial to me but I always hated this part of it. It's not me. I don’t think it's a lot of players. Most players just want to get back to football."
And while they will be better at appearing united (mainly because there's only a 32 of them), I suspect that a number of owners have had enough as well. For one, a lot of these owners are just in this to enjoy it. These guys for the most part didn't get rich running an NFL team, they got rich first then bought a team because it's fun. Plus, those billions of dollars of debt payments guys like Jerry Jones have to make on their new stadiums aren't going to stop just because the NFL doesn't play next year. And with the Doty ruling effectively locking the TV money away from the owners next year, they're going to be pretty motivated to get a deal done.