Reports: League agrees to no preseason games

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The NFLPA wanted no preseason games. The NFL wanted two.

A compromise was one, but the NFLPA wouldn’t give in so we are headed to a summer without preseason football.

The league today offered the union no preseason games, according to multiple reports.

Perhaps the only people disappointed in the news are the undrafted free agents, who now face an even steeper climb to sticking around for the regular season.

The news is a big step toward starting training camp on time.

A report earlier Monday indicated the league had reduced the number of preseason games it wanted to one, which would have happened the third week of the exhibition season. But as NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith explained Friday: It makes no sense to ask players to risk their health and safety for a meaningless game.

“To engage in two games where players would be flying all over the country and then engaging with each other to work, and to do that prior to the season, doesn’t increase the likelihood of starting and finishing the season on time,” Smith said on a Pro Football Writers of America conference call Friday.

No preseason games will allow the league to follow a schedule recommended by a joint committee. That schedule calls for three weeks of strength and conditioning work, 10 days of non-padded practice and 10 days of padded practice over the final two weeks.

58 responses to “Reports: League agrees to no preseason games

  1. It seems like one game would have been important to work through the process and find problems that need fixed.

    Side note: Team consistancy and chemestry is going to be even more important this year than ever. Chiefs return 21 of 22 starters and have the best QB in the game.

  2. If playing 16 games plus playoffs is fine, but adding one preseason game makes it too dangerous, then I’d say the plan to have a season at all is pretty flawed.

  3. Assuming the regular season actually happens, this will be a good test to see if the quality of play is affected by the lack of a preseason. If it’s nearly as good, there’ll be calls to eliminate the preseason altogether.

  4. canetic says:
    July 20, 2020 at 7:48 pm
    The first few weeks of the season are going to be rough.
    ———————————————————–

    They may be the only weeks of the season!

  5. Each year we watch the quality of play erode and the officiating get even worse. I am not sure if the UDFAs or the fans are getting the worse part of this latest horror show.

  6. Thank the Lord! There should never be another “preseason game” until the end of time! Worst thing ever.

  7. Really too bad for the UDFA’s as noted. One or two games with no veterans even on site to allow those new players to compete for a spot would make some sense. Now, some of those guys may do something stupid in camp to get noticed.

  8. jrock955 says:
    July 20, 2020 at 8:34 pm
    Thank the Lord! There should never be another “preseason game” until the end of time! Worst thing ever.
    _____________________________

    Just wait until the season(if there is one) and watch how bad and for how long these teams suck and you’ll change that tune! Hell with a full training camp and 4 pre-season games they look like crap for 3-4wks now they’re going to look like HS JV team for 5-6wks or more. I wouldn’t pay to watch trash football like there’s going to be this year but HEY if you want to then have at it.

  9. It’s really hurts the players more then the owners..how many “long shots” that go undrafted and earn their way on the 53 (or practice squad) wont make it now? Guys like Phillip Linsey ect will have their NFL dream squashed w/o at least 1 preseason game to show they can help a team win. Lots of players perform better in games (meaningful or preseason) then they do in practice. The NFLPA is hurting themselves more then the Owners. Sad they couldn’t agree on at least one game.

  10. They should allow 70 player rosters this season to account for rookies not getting a preseason to prove themselves and as cushion for losing players to covid.

  11. Sounds like a team’s season could be toast after the first couple games without some games to test out stuff. Maybe not, though.

  12. Maybe the NFL’s secret plan is this…the league realizes the importance of preseason games even if fans and players don’t like them. But every year people put more pressure on the league to get rid of some or all of them.

    So with COVID-19, the NFL realizes this season is going to be screwy anyway so why not say, “okay, let’s see what regular season football looks like with significantly less practice, not just for the players, but coaches, refs, field crews, etc.”

    The result will be so awful the league can then show that preseason is actually important. For the same reason a Broadway Play isn’t going to go live without doing any dress rehearsals.

  13. NFL players are being rather demanding that the NFL ensure their safety. Sorry, but it’s not possible. The NFL doesn’t control the world. Either play with the known risk of getting the virus or don’t and don’t expect a paycheck. It’s the choice that millions of Americans have to make every day.

  14. This is why i will never support the players union getting power…. this is the kind of hollow victories and double edged sword they push.

    Theh are hurting the the Owners a bit….but they are hurting the business more because there are many agreements in place with local tv for the preseason games yet they refuse to hold a single one as compromise. The gate, which the owners love in preseason, is not an issue so this in the end does not hurt them as much. Just the partneras that put money in the players pocket.

    They also hurt their players, stunting the growth of young players.

    Plus, this will result in a rash of injuries in the first few games.

    And most people agree there should be a couple games for players to get going and also most people do not see why there needs to be no games at all…. they simply fight for things for the sake of fighting.

    Even when thwre is no clear advantage.

  15. An alternate take: The preseason has become useless over the last 15 years. Back in those days, playing time ramped up for the starters until they played most of the game in the third week. Now they barely play at all. If this gets us a season I’m for it.

  16. I don’t think only the UDFAs were disappointed – all rookies would be as they have practically no chance to be starters – except maybe some first round picks.

    But don’t think we won’t be watching pre-season games… they’ll be plenty in September if they have a season.

  17. I suspect if we a lot of sloppy football in September, there won’t be much of a push to get rid of pre-season next year.

  18. Start the season 4 weeks early then. Build in a few more bye weeks which will help quarantine if necessary.

  19. Why do people not realize preseason games are important…..those games are for middle and late round draft picks as well as undrafted free agents to show case their talent. There isn’t enough time during camp. So basically you are saying screw you to all those underdog players. People dont like them because they arent as exciting as regular season games and they feature a bunch of no bodys. Well how do those now bodys become somebody’s if they dont get a chance to prove them selves? So make the draft 4 rounds and get rid of undrafted free agency because they pretty much become useless.

  20. Season will not be canceled.
    Please stop saying it
    If there are infections people will be quarantined
    End of discussion.

  21. Are “game checks” issued for preseason games? If not, maybe that is a factor — why risk injury or illness when there is no compensation for the game.

  22. They should allow roster expansion and no less than 60 active game day players for at least the first quarter of the season. Then they can start trimming down their roster. Not sure why that was not discussed in the negotiations.

  23. Every fans 1st reaction so far is that the quality of play will be less to start the season. That seems like an accurate reaction. So many reasons as to why that is and how it could extend throughout the entire season are too many to list here. Bottom line is this will be a watered down season. If players will be putting less of their time into playing it to its highest level… Fans just might put less of their time watching it.

  24. Going to be like college football, where there are no exhibition games, might want to ask college coaches how they get their teams ready to play at first snap.

  25. The Owners are just buying to to decide whether or not to cancel the actual season. Unless the players agree to no pay for cancelled games, the owners will chance the entire thing. No chance they pay full salaries for the players to play 1-2 games. No chance whatsoever.

  26. This is all about money. According to the CBA if a season gets cancelled but at least one game is played in the regular season then the players salaries are guaranteed for the whole year. The players do not want to take a chance getting hurt in preseason and missing the regular season start and then have the whole season cancelled and they get zero dollars…

  27. “Thank the Lord! There should never be another “preseason game” until the end of time! Worst thing ever.”

    The NFL has a perfectly solid reason for having preseason games and its certainly not for the fans viewing pleasure,they do it so the draftees learn the system under live action and prove they belong on the team,they do it so the undrafted players can prove they are good enough to play in and make great money in the NFL.though its not right for the NFL to charge full price for preseason games its the fans right not to attend the games. the NFL certainly doesnt think its the worst thing ever,they think its a great thing to give these kids a fair chance to crack and NFL roster by showing their talent on the football field.now that chance is gone for hundreds of really good young players to make the NFL.

  28. In a related story, NFL owners also agreed to not refund tickets all ready purchased by season ticket holders.

  29. Steve Cunningham says:
    July 20, 2020 at 9:31 pm
    jrock955 says:
    July 20, 2020 at 8:34 pm
    Thank the Lord! There should never be another “preseason game” until the end of time! Worst thing ever.
    _____________________________

    Just wait until the season(if there is one) and watch how bad and for how long these teams suck and you’ll change that tune! Hell with a full training camp and 4 pre-season games they look like crap for 3-4wks now they’re going to look like HS JV team for 5-6wks or more. I wouldn’t pay to watch trash football like there’s going to be this year but HEY if you want to then have at it.

    ——————-
    Funny how colleges can get by with no preseason games, and are just fine. Yet, those same players now get to the pro level and need preseason games to be effective? Preseason games are nothing more than a money grab by owners. They charge the same price for tickets (at least as part of a season ticket package), and don’t pay the players nearly as much. That is the reason ownership wants to keep preseason games. If a coaching staff cannot tell which players to keep by their play in training camp, they shouldn’t be coaching. They can run any team scrimmages among their own players to give them a “game time” feel if they think it is needed.

  30. this statement meshes well with the one coming next month that says the league agrees to no regular season games….

  31. As it is, NFL games are garbage until around Week 4. Now we get 6+ weeks of sub-par football. Can’t wait!

  32. I think this is a great opportunity for the NFL to start investing in AA farm teams. Especially this year when colleges aren’t going to be having their seasons. Let the AA schedule start a couple weeks earlier and there’s your preseason.

  33. I may be the outlier here, but I actually enjoy the preseason. It’s fun to watch no-namers go out there and show their skills. And some of them show enough to become stars in the league. It’s sad we won’t see it this year, but there is a great reason not to have it.

    It would be great if the NFL launched a temporary D-league just for this year where teams can designate players they cut for development. I think that would be a fair compromise that the NFLPA would be OK with.

  34. joshgordonsbong says:
    July 21, 2020 at 10:25 am
    this statement meshes well with the one coming next month that says the league agrees to no regular season games….

    Unless the players agree that they will expect no pay for games not played the owners will shut down the entire season. Bank on it.

  35. sherry4002 says:
    July 21, 2020 at 8:36 am
    Going to be like college football, where there are no exhibition games, might want to ask college coaches how they get their teams ready to play at first snap.
    ________________________________________________________
    By playing cupcakes the first couple three weeks of the season?

  36. arkimedes says:

    Funny how colleges can get by with no preseason games, and are just fine. Yet, those same players now get to the pro level and need preseason games to be effective? Preseason games are nothing more than a money grab by owners. They charge the same price for tickets (at least as part of a season ticket package), and don’t pay the players nearly as much. That is the reason ownership wants to keep preseason games. If a coaching staff cannot tell which players to keep by their play in training camp, they shouldn’t be coaching. They can run any team scrimmages among their own players to give them a “game time” feel if they think it is needed.

    ————————

    They do have preseason games – they just count towards their records – For Example – September 7, 2019:
    Wisconsin 61 – Central Michigan 0
    Oregon 77 – Nevada 6

    Clearly a preseason slate.

  37. They do have preseason games – they just count towards their records – For Example – September 7, 2019:
    Wisconsin 61 – Central Michigan 0
    Oregon 77 – Nevada 6

    Clearly a preseason slate.

    What about when Boise State beats the pants of the ‘big boys’ they were supposed to lose to? Like when they traveled to Georgia in week one a few years ago and blew the wheels off em? Or VT? Or OU? Or…every opportunity they had?

  38. Given the poor quality of play we’ll be witnessing in the early weeks of the season (if there is one), the NFL and NFLPA should be discussing discounted tickets/concessions for the product quality they’ll be putting on the field.

  39. Your local high school team now undergoes a more rigorous training and preseason practice process than the NFL.

  40. Nobody knows the long term effects this virus can have on the central nervous system, but I doubt the player’s union is going to risk getting any of the players infected.

  41. DeMaurice Smith explained Friday:
    “It makes no sense to ask players to risk their health and safety for a meaningless game.”

    It never did.

  42. I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think there is going to be football this year.

  43. jrock955 says:
    July 20, 2020 at 8:34 pm
    Thank the Lord! There should never be another “preseason game” until the end of time! Worst thing ever.

    ***************************************************************************

    Yes. Its a darn shame to allow young talent on the field to see what they can do, and God forbid, actually make the team.

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