Could a deal to end Deflategate be in the works?

According to The Wall Street Journal, the NFL and the Players Association are working toward an agreement that will strip league commissioner Roger Goodell of the power to discipline players for off-field actions.

NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith said Monday that any agreement between the league and the players would be contingent upon settling all ongoing appeals, e.g. the NFL’s appeal on Judge Richard Berman’s decision on Deflategate.

“It’s a player decision with what they want to do, but I can’t imagine there is any appetite to agree with any proposal that doesn’t wrap up all the litigation,” Smith said. “We can either continue to litigate or reach a collectively bargained conclusion.”

This means that for a deal to be reached, the league would have to reach a settlement with Tom Brady. In light of how tough the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judges were on Brady and his lawyer Jeffrey Kessler, it might make sense for both sides to agree upon a compromise settlement.

The NFL owners meet next week in Orlando where this issue is surely to be addressed. No deal has been reached, significant obstacles remain, and any potential deal will not happen soon, people involved with the matter told the Journal.

But maybe, just maybe, our long national Deflategate nightmare can finally be put to bed.