On June 7, the NFL sent to all teams a lengthy and detailed pandemic protocol for training camp. The NFL Players Association quickly pointed out that it had not agreed to the rules. The NFLPA now has.
The league and the union have reached an agreement on a club facility protocol for training camp; PFT has obtained a copy of the document. It uses the same three-tier approach to access to restricted areas, a concept on which the league’s prior document was based. Teams must submit to the league a list of the proposed designees under each of the three tiers one week before the arrival of players. (This process could create rancor for some teams.)
The agreement allows teams to have up to two fan events at the stadium during training-camp practice, as long as state and local requirements are followed as to the number of fans, no fans are permitted on the field, and no fans will have contact or interaction with players.
Strict physical distancing requirements appear throughout the document, with locker-room reconfiguration required to allow at least six feet between players. Players must be at least six feet apart in the facility at all times, whether in the weight room, shower room, training room, etc. Saunas and steam rooms will not be used during training camp.
The players had wanted all meetings to be conducted virtually; the document requires them “to the extent possible.” If in-person meetings are necessary, teams must try to hold them outdoors. Physical distancing and masks are required for all meetings that occur in the facility, whether inside or outside.
The document does not address frequency or type of virus testing. That presumably will be covered in a separate agreement.