In case you forgot, we are still in the middle of a pandemic. Well, at least I think we are. The NBA, MLB, and NHL are looking for ways to resume or start their seasons. Throughout the last few months, it was uncertain if the NFL would start on time; if it did, there would be hundreds of issues that would need to be worked out.
The regular season is still murky, but shapes are starting to form regarding how things will go this summer. Ian Rapoport reported that coaches may be among the employees allowed to return to team facilities, beginning tomorrow.
A memo was just sent to teams. Among other news: “Beginning tomorrow, June 5, coaching staffs may be among the employees returning to your facility.” Big news.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) June 4, 2020
So rather than having coaching staffs work in isolated situations in their home offices or on Bill O’Brien’s back porch, they can go back to their cubicles. NFL facilities are now allowed to have up to 100 people working at a time with local and state government approval. The players are still not permitted to report to team facilities until training camps begin.
This is a step towards something. As far as training camps go, teams are not allowed to travel for training camps this year. They will be stuck practicing at their own headquarters. There will also be no joint practices. This was reported by ESPN in a memo obtained from the league:
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell informed teams Tuesday, in a memo obtained by ESPN, that they must hold training camps at their main practice facilities because of the virus.
The memo also said that teams will not be allowed to hold joint training camp practices with other teams.
Goodell cited limiting travel, exposure and contact along with eliminating the need to clean and maintain two facilities in the league’s decisions, which he noted that the “NFLPA was strongly in favor of.”
“These steps are being taken for the 2020 preseason to address the current conditions and are not expected to be in place in 2021,” Goodell said.
The Texans typically start training camp at the end of July. It will be interesting to see if fans are allowed to attend select practices as they have in previous seasons.
A month ago, it looked dubious the NFL season would start on time. Now it’s looking like it will, and fans could be able to attend in some capacity instead of having games played in front of stadiums filled with plush toys and mannequins.