As states loosen their quarantine regulations, and NFL facilities begin to open up to employees, there is still no timetable for when players will be allowed back.
After all, football is a contact sport that doesn’t adhere to social distancing regulations.
So for now, Dr. Allen Sills, the NFL’s chief medical officer, won’t put a date on the minicamps that were supposed to have happened already.
“We’re not putting dates on the calendar,” Dr. Sills said, when asked if minicamps would even take place in June, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. “When we and the NFLPA together feel that we’re at a point of satisfaction with the science, we’ll move forward. We’re moving as fast as the science and data take us.”
Dr. Sills says he’s worked closely with other United States sports leagues to tackle the similar issues they face.
And while the NFL and its players’ association apparently agree on many issues regarding how to safely bring the league back, and all the logistics that come along with that, they have to be “flexible and adaptable” in response to new developments.
“I really see it as it’s not a one-time agreement that we’ll be reaching,” Dr. Sills said, via NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero.
Sills says the NFL has "broad agreement on many, many issues" with the NFLPA, but issues such as testing still evolving. "I really see it as it’s not a one-time agreement that we’ll be reaching." Have to be flexible/adaptable to respond to new knowledge, make data-based decisions
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) May 19, 2020
As for when players do return to the facilities, Sills said they certainly anticipate positive tests for COVID-19.
“Our challenge is to identify them as quickly as possible,” Dr. Sills said, and prevent them from spreads to any other participants.”