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      NFL union head: Owners set for no football in 2011

      GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) " NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith says there are new signs owners are preparing for a football-free 2011. With support from Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, he's asking fans to take the players' side.

      Smith spoke Tuesday at a tailgate-style fan luncheon a few blocks from Lambeau Field. He referred to a recent Sports Business Journal report that said the NFL is requiring banks that lend money to its teams to extend grace periods for loan defaults through the end of the 2011 season in the event of a lockout.

      Rodgers asked a group of about 300 fans to "stand with us" in what he expects to be a "tough fight" over a new collective bargaining agreement.

      Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

      Read more: A Looming NFL Lockout Is Rooted in Stadium Hypocrisy (Huffington Post)Greed drives NFL's push for 18-game schedule (MLive)

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