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Is there a compromise between the NFL Network and Time Warner?

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There might be a compromise between the NFL Network and Time Warner. Let me say that again. There might be a compromise between the NFL Network and Time Warner. And the benefits to all of us, might be quick. Like sometime next week quick.

National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell on Thursday offered a new proposal to Time Warner Cable in an effort to break the logjam over the issue of carrying the NFL Network on expanded basic cable.

In a letter to Glenn A. Britt, president and CEO of Time Warner Cable, Goodell said the league would be willing to let a third party determine the price and tier for NFL Network distribution on Time Warner systems. In addition, Goodell said he would be willing to let Time Warner carry the network immediately, assuming Britt agrees to the third-party arbitration.

The offer, Goodell said, is good through Dec. 28. That date is important. On Dec. 29, the New England Patriots, seeking a perfect season, will meet the New York (Giants) in the final regular-season game. That game has taken on importance because the Patriots appear headed for a perfect season.

Were they pressured?

Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., expressed concern that many fans in their home states will not be able to see games on the channel involving the New England Patriots or the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Leahy is the committee's chairman, and Specter is its ranking member.

"Now that the NFL is adopting strategies to limit distribution of game programming to their own networks," they wrote, "Congress may need to reexamine the need and desirability of their continued exemption from the Nation's antitrust laws."