The NFLPA will reportedly move forward with plans to decertify, making it official on Thursday ahead of the deadline for a new collective bargaining agreement. The union must file for decertification ahead of the 11:59 p.m. deadline on Thursday, making tomorrow do-or-die for the players. In response, the owners owners will reportedly vote on a lockout on Friday after the collective bargaining agreement expires.
The news, in the form of rumors, comes from ESPN's Adam Schefter on Twitter.
Being whispered: NFLPA files for decertification after tomorrow's mediation. CEC votes next day to lockout or close down. Then lawyers play.
Again, none of this is official, but it jives with what's been reported in the last week or so. The NFLPA has been mulling the idea of decertification in an effort to take the battle to the courts in an attempt to block the lockout. At its disposal, the union, which wouldn't exist following decertification, has the ability to file an injunction to stop the lockout, as well as filing an anti-trust lawsuit in hopes of gaining leverage in the CBA negotiations.
On the NFL side, the owners still must vote to officially begin a work stoppage, though it's all but a formality at this point. The NFL has been threatening, and planning, a lockout in the event a new CBA is not in place by Thursday's deadline.
The two sides are still at the bargaining table and will return for a final session on Thursday. If it fails, and it appears the NFL and union are far apart, the chain of events -- including decertification and a lockout -- will move forward quickly.