NFL Releases New Memo For Total Reopening Of Facilities
The NFL and the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) agreed to set a planner for all 32 teams regarding the total reopening of training facilities this week. The memo, written by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, shows the league’s comprehensive plans for infection prevention and treatment for COVID-19, instructions on facility access, and logistics methods.
From the memo, here are the most important guidelines for accessing team facilities:
- Players, coaches, trainers, and team personnel are to be separated into three tiers, with access to various parts of team facilities limited to only the most essential employees.
- All players and club employees with access to restricted areas must undergo daily screening and testing prior to entering the facility.
- Locker rooms must be reconfigured (to the extent possible) to allow players to maintain 6 feet of social distance at all times.
- Teams are to hold virtual meetings whenever possible, and are encouraged to move in-person meetings outdoors and have those attending wear masks.
- Workout groups are to be limited to 15 people or fewer, and players are encouraged to wear masks in the weight room. Similarly, trainers are to schedule appointments with players rather than have an open time for tasks such as taping ankles.
There’s no timetable for the season comeback yet, but it’s a major step for the NFL to fully open its club facilities to all staff and players. Other sports leagues continue to look for training locations at the moment. Meanwhile, the NFL Madden Tournament hosted by Nitrogen Sports is sure to keep you company before the start of the 2020-21 NFL season.
Although most facilities are open now with the backing of state governments, the NFLPA does not require players to return to their facilities yet. NFLPA president JC Tretter even reminded players to prioritize their safety and to be wary of teams requiring them to return to work:
“Players: A reminder to be wary of any updates or information about returning to work from the league or your team. Contact me, your rep, or your player director to receive accurate updates as we push for the safest possible return to work.”
The success of the reopening means that training camps might begin in late July, with the first preseason game, Dallas vs Pittsburgh, happening on August 6. The regular season is set to take place in Kansas City on September 10.