Roger Goodell and DeMaurice Smith and their respective staffs continue to meet in warm-and-fuzzy fashion in Minnesota, and now they’re prepared to let their constituents re-join the labor party.

Groups of players and owners have flown into Minneapolis and will join their fearless leaders and their legal teams at a local law firm on Thursday, according to NFL.com’s Albert Breer.

Players arrived in Minneapolis on Wednesday for the talks, and a number of owners were expected to arrive later in the evening. That will lead into a set of talks Thursday that will include NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith, the legal teams and players. The parties are only scheduled to meet Thursday for now, but preparations are being made to continue into Friday if it’s deemed necessary, with the league-imposed lockout in its fourth month.

So here’s the big question: Is Friday being left open to put the finishing touches on a deal that the parties feel might be nearly wrapped up on Thursday, or is it currently not in the schedule because the parties feel they’ll need a break for the long weekend before reigniting the discussion next week?

The lawyers have reportedly been exchanging proposals this week, which causes me to believe that this development is a positive one. Still, a lot or murkiness exists, due in part to the fact that both sides have been relatively quiet since clandestine talks began in early June.

Will silence finally be golden in NFL labor talks? If it is, there’s a chance we get some major CBA-related news before this week is through.

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