Time to stock up on chips and beer...There WILL be Football!

The NFL's labor nightmare is over. The sides put the finishes touches on a new collective bargaining agreement to end the lockout early Monday and football will soon be back in business.

The NFL Players Association executive committee is gathering in Washington on Monday to vote to recommend the deal to the 32 players representatives, who will then recommend the deal to the 1,900 players. The voting process will begin Monday.

According to a source, if the players approve the deal Monday, as expected, beginning Tuesday clubs can start signing their draft choices and rookie free agents. They can also begin talking to veteran free agents, but signings can't begin until Friday at 6 p.m.

Teams are permitted to report to training camp 15 days before their first preseason game. As a result, camps will open for 10 teams each on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The Giants are expected to open Friday. The Jets, who open the preseason on Monday night Aug. 15 in Houston against the Texans, will be in the last group to report to camp. That will be Sunday, the same day the Texans report.

The lockout began on March 11 and has been in effect for 136 days. Owners voted 31-0-1 last week in Atlanta to ratify the deal. The players held off their vote, negotiations continued over the weekend and the final points were agreed to very early Monday morning.

This will put an end to the longest work stoppage in NFL history. But it all came in the offseason. In 1982, the players went on strike for 57 days. In 1987, the strike lasted 24 days. There had been labor peace for the last 24 years until the lockout.

But the lockout will be replaced by the wildest free agent period in NFL history as teams scramble to get players signed and fill their rosters for training camp. Because of the lack of an offseason, training camp rosters are being expanded from 80 to 90 players.

From the New York Times