It's being reported that the NFL owners made a second offer to the players during mediation on Monday. The particulars of that deal have not been announced but it's likely that the players didn't really care for what the owners offered, considering the NFLPA's president Kevin Mawae's comments about where the two sides stand.
mawae - "we are not anywhere closer to a deal now than we were in march"
The first offer from the NFL was basically laughed off the table by the NFLPA, spurring them to decertify and take the owners to court. The players might be wise to take a second look at this offer because it could be about as good as it gets.
If the 8th Circuit Judges' decision to grant the owners an extended stay, keeping the lockout in place at least until their appeal of Judge Susan Nelson's decision to lift the lockout can be heard, is an indicator of what their decision could be after the appeal, the players could find themselves locked out all the way into the season.
Hopefully that doesn't happen, but if it does, the players will get more desperate and I'd be willing to bet that the owners, smelling blood in the water, won't make them a great deal.
So, it would be wise for the players to look through this proposal carefully and decide if they want to make a deal or not. Either way, the last thing they should do is refuse to cooperate and wait for the courts to take care of things.
So now the challenge is to not publicly complain about the status of the talks to but keep talking. Respond to the offer, and see what the owners' next move is. By replacing negotiation with whining and waiting for the outcome of litigation, the players aren't helping themselves, the fans, or the game.