Here's a reality check. The league faced the final capped season in 2009 after owners voted against extending the current Collective Bargaining Agreement in 2008. By that time we knew that the league was planning on locking out the players by March 4, 2011 when the new league year starts and the current CBA expired.
And now we're only ten days away. That's the reality check.
With the Owners and National Football League Players Association working behind closed doors with a mediator to find common ground, players could do something to stay ahead of the curve. And one of those players could be Bengals quarterback Dan LeFevour.
According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and Hines Ward are discussing about conducting their own OTAs with quarterbacks and receivers to stay in shape, getting their offseason workout in if the league continues locking out the players.
"Ben and I discussed it. He talked about getting together with the wide receivers," Ward said.
They suggested meeting at different spots -- all gathering in Pittsburgh and then all gathering in the hometown of each receiver for various workouts. Ward said no plans were made, just discussed. But if the spring drills known as OTAs are affected, the players want to do something.
"We have to," Ward said. "It's more for the younger guys. They won't have any workout programs. A lot of those guys have been going since the combine last year, training hard and then going 28 weeks of football."
Could Bengals fans expect to see something like this? Not with the status quo, we likely won't. Even though Carson Palmer has worked with Andre Caldwell and Jerome Simpson during the offseason in the past near his California home, there's no way Palmer would risk the perception that he's coming back. We're also pretty sure that restricted free agent Jordan Palmer won't step on his older brother's toes by gathering players to conduct their own offseason workout. But we're just speculating. Chad Ochocinco is out; he simply doesn't work out with the team unless it's mandatory from the organization.
So that brings us to Dan LeFevour, who spent his rookie season as the team's emergency quarterback. As it stands, LeFevour doesn't factor into the Bengals long-term plans more than a typical backup. With the playbook in hand, why not plan on workout out with Jordan Shipley, Jermaine Gresham, Jerome Simpson and Andre Caldwell?
It would go a long way to show leadership, initiative, with a head start on Jay Gruden's new offense while building a repertoire with the team's younger, and future, receivers.
The Bengals claimed LeFevour from Chicago off waivers on September 5.