With optimism at an all-time low, the NFL and NFLPA appear to be just hours away from severing talks and turning things over to the courts. But as I mentioned last night and tweeted again today, I feel as though the owners realize there is little for them to gain in the courts and they just might end up giving in to the players today.

That’s because the league is set to make one final offer to the union prior to the 5:00 p.m. ET deadline, according to Jason La Canfora of NFL.com.

The two sides are meeting right now. Take it away, Jason:

The session is scheduled to include a proposal — likely a final one — from the NFL. If it isn’t to the union’s liking — and doesn’t include major changes from past proposals and/or more full financial data — then multiple NFLPA officials said they will present the league with a letter saying they will dissolve. The union also will begin filing papers with U.S. District Judge David Doty in Minnesota to seek an injunction against a potential lockout.

La Canfora adds that while the union has to decertify by 5:00, the league can’t impose a lockout until midnight.

The key here is that another proposal could be made that might encourage the players association to consider extending the collective bargaining agreement expiration deadline once again. There’s almost no chance the NFLPA accepts the proposal on the spot (just imagine…) but we’ll have to hope that the proposal gives the union an indication that progress is being made.

In other words: the owners better be willing to share more information.

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