Still no agreement between NFL, officials

The NFL and its officials' union broke off talks again on Saturday without an agreement and it appears as though the season will start with replacements.

The NFL Referees Association released a statement Saturday and said no further meetings have been scheduled.

"We met with the NFL this morning and discussed various potential solutions to reach a new collective bargaining agreement," the NFLRA statement began. "Unfortunately, we were unable to reach any agreement.

"We are disappointed because it means our members will not be back on the field for Week 1 of the regular season due to the NFL's continuing lockout. We remain willing to negotiate with the NFL in order to reach a fair agreement. However, no additional meetings are scheduled at this time."

The NFL issued a memo to all teams earlier this week, indicating that the regular season would start with replacement officials. It may have served as a negotiating ploy, as both sides convened for discussions that apparently did nothing to alleviate the stalemate.

According to the NFL, the sides remain far apart on economic issues including pay and pension, and non-economic issues involving the league's wish to be able to replace officials it believes are performing inadequately.

The regular season begins Wednesday when the reigning Super Bowl champion New York Giants host the Dallas Cowboys.