NFL, NFLPA Agrees To Start Training Camp On July 28
The COVID-19 pandemic brought major problems to the sports community. Sports leagues and player associations, particularly the NFL and NFLPA, are in constant negotiations involving salary distribution, tournament format, and event schedule. While there are details that still need to be ironed out, both parties finally agreed to start the training camp with shortened preseason.
The NFL and NFL Players Association have agreed to a plan that requires players to report to training camps on July 28. This date is final, but the organizations are deciding on how the COVID-19 protocols will be handled and how the training camps would look like. All other given dates after training camp, meanwhile, are still tentative.
During training, teams are required to remain at their own facilities and strictly follow the released memo for the entire duration of the offseason. Teams and players are prohibited from joining combined practices with other franchises. Traveling to other communities is also highly discouraged. Other protocols imposed by NFLPA medical director Dr. Thom Mayer must be followed.
To protect the players and staff during their on-site training, the NFL explores other options to provide protective gear and equipment. Recently, the league shared that they are testing a prototype N95 face mask to be used in the future.
The NFL and NFLPA will soon announce the complete guidelines for the entire season. Regardless of the COVID-19 trajectory, NFLPA president J.C. Tretter assured everyone that player safety is their top priority:
“Our priority is always going to be the health and safety of the players. Usually, when you say that, it is things that will happen on the field. Obviously, that takes a new meaning with everything going on now where you talk about the health and safety of the players is you are talking about their own personal health.”
Tentative Dates For The 2020 NFL Season
July 28 – Opening of training camps
August 6 – Hall of Fame Game at Canton, Ohio; Steelers vs. Cowboys (Aug. 8 p.m. ET, NBC)
August 13 to 17 – Week 1 of the regular season
August 20 to 24 – Week 2 of the regular season
September 3 – Start of Week 3