The deal is done. The NFL has confirmed an agreement is in place with the regular NFL referees. The NFL Referee Association is assembling a crew to work tomorrow night’s Browns-Ravens 8:20 PM ET game.
NFL Network’s Albert Breer reports that talks went 8-9 hours on Saturday and Sunday. They spoke over phone on Monday, then negotiated 17 hours on Tuesday and had over 14 hours of talks today already.
Friday, the officials will travel to Dallas to retrieve their equipment and learn their game assignments for Sunday and Monday, with the same crews working together as last year. Yes, it’s really happening.
It seems the current employee benefits package will stay for five more years, then switch to a 401K program. Reports say the new deal is up in 2018.
Multiple sources say that the officials will split $2.5 million for the missed games, enjoy a pay raise of 4 percent, and be . They will all vote on Friday on the final new deal in Dallas, participate in a clinic, then fly out to their respective sites (except the refs calling Monday night’s Bears-Cowboys game). Officials will get 12 game checks guaranteed this season, and 19 in future seasons.
Walt Anderson, a top ref in the NFL: “I’m relieved it’s over. I think everybody’s relieved it’s over. It’s time to get back to work and move on.”
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