As the NFL continues to monitor things amid the coronavirus pandemic, the league isn’t ready to commit to a date for reopening team facilities.
Per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the NFL sent a memo to all 32 teams on Tuesday explaining that certain criteria must be met before the league will consider reopening and that more information will be made available later this week:
The NFL forced teams to close their facilities for the time being on March 25.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell issued a memo to all 32 clubs on May 6 outlining the protocols and procedures for reopening that were reiterated in this new memo.
“The protocols are intended to allow for a safe and phased reopening,” Goodell wrote in the original memo. “The first phase would involve a number of non-player personnel. … No players would be permitted in the facility except to continue a course of therapy and rehabilitation that was underway when facilities were initially closed.”
Goodell also noted he wanted teams to have protocols for reopening in place by May 15 “in anticipation of being advised when club facilities will formally reopen.”
The NFL sent a memo to team presidents and top officials late last night emphasizing that facilities remain closed and there is no date set for reopening. But that there should be more info this week. pic.twitter.com/n6QJXVH2Z4
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) May 14, 2020
John Ourand and Ben Fischer of the Sports Business Journal reported the NFL was developing multiple variations of its schedule to account for the possibility of games being postponed, including potentially pushing Super Bowl LV back three weeks to Feb. 28.
Fox Sports announcer Joe Buck said on Andy Cohen Live that it’s “pretty much a done deal” the network will pump in crowd noise and project virtual fans into stadiums if the NFL can’t have fans in attendance during games.
The league released its 2020 schedule last week, with the regular season set to begin on Sept. 10 when the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs host the Houston Texans.