SARTELL - Never have officials from a sports league been so welcome.  A tentative agreement was reached last (Wednesday) night between the NFL and its officials, ending the labor dispute between the two sides.

Sartell's Mike Spanier says the officials have to go through a rigorous physical, before they can take the field, so they will re ready to suit-up for this weekend's games.

The tentative new deal is an eight-year agreement.  The pact calls for officials' salaries to increase from an average of $149,000 a year in 2011 to $173,000 in 2013, rising to $205,000 by 2019.

The regular refs have been locked-out since June.

Spanier is starting his 14th year as an NFL official.  He's scheduled to fly to Dallas to vote on the new contract, then travel to Atlanta to officiate the Falcons game against Carolina on Sunday.