After more false starts than I can remember, the NFL lockout is set to end now that the players and owners have agreed to all aspects of a new CBA. Kansas City Chiefs center Rudy Niswanger, who has been on top of the negotiations from day one, thinks players are ready for training camp.
“This is actually the normal part of the process. We normally go to training camp the last week of July. It’s normal to be on our own preparing for training camp. So guys are ready. We’re in the mind-set.
“As far as final details, travel arrangements, last-second things, that will take a couple of days to fully go through. Guys haven’t known an exact reporting date so they’ll need a few days to get things in order with their families and their kids. There have been so many artificial timelines out there in the media. It’s not something guys can prepare for off media recommendations. This is something we have to hear from the team.”
The reporting date may be similar to a normal year, but it will be the first official workouts since the season ended. It is naive to think some players won’t show up to camp out of shape without the handful of OTAs to keep them in line.
That first week of training camp when Todd Haley first took over was fun to watch as player after player was unable to pass the coach’s conditioning test. While I wouldn’t expect the same number of players falling short, it will be interesting to follow along the running list of those in the “rehab” area instead of on the practice field.