The owners have blinked. In a statement sent out publicly, the NFL has announced that team facilities will be open starting at 8 a.m. tomorrow, allowing players to work out and get medical treatment. This means that the owners, for now, have agreed to abide by most of the ruling Judge Susan Nelson handed out that called for the end of the NFL lockout.
The league will continue to appeal Judge Nelson's ruling to the Eighth Circuit, but for now, this offers a temporary solution. Players will be allowed to use team facilities for "physical examinations, rehabilitations and medical treatment." Coaches will also be allowed to distribute playbooks, game film and the like, and can meet with players about any of those things. The league is also committed to resuming its drug program.
As for free agency and trades, the league writes that it plans to release guidelines for how that will proceed, as well as the official start date of the 2011 season, on Friday.
With respect to player transactions (such as signings, trades of player contracts, terminations, tryouts, etc.), we plan to distribute to all clubs, likely tomorrow, a comprehensive set of procedures governing such transactions. This will include the timing for the commencement of the 2011 League Year, free agent signings and other customary player transactions.