The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Wednesday because of the sensitive nature of the talks.
Smith, McNeill and agent Alvin Keels didn't immediately return calls and e-mails seeking comment.
Keels confirmed last week that the Chargers have threatened to place McNeill on the roster exempt list if he doesn't sign his contract tender by Friday. By being placed on the roster exempt list, he would face a three-game suspension once he's signed. Unhappy about not getting a long-term deal, McNeill is believed to be willing to sit out the season's first 10 games.