NFL Teams to Play Zero Preseason Games
There will be a 2020 NFL season after the league and NFLPA agreed on a deal that will see the 16-week season played. There were fears that the 2020 NFL season would be canceled or postponed due to the coronavirus, however, measures will be put in place to keep players, staff, and other individuals as safe as possible. The biggest change between previous seasons and the upcoming campaign is that there will be no preseason this August. The NFL Week 1 kicks off on September 11 and football fans can visit Wunderdog Sports Picks to get the latest predictions and previews for the Kansas City Chiefs versus the Houston Texans.
The decision between the NFL and NFLPA to eliminate preseason games in August came together quickly allowing teams to move forward for training camp. Teams will enter training camp and complete intra-squad scrimmages. In previous preseasons, teams played four games to prepare for the regular season. With that number now down to zero, teams could go into the new season underprepared.
Teams will select players for their rosters from practices rather than seeing them in preseason games. For players on the chopping block, it will be a challenge to make the NFL Week 1 roster. The good news for the players on the bubble is that the NFL’s practice squad rosters have been increased to 16 members. Teams can also protect four practice squad players and carry a maximum of six veteran players. The practice squads will give NFL teams more flexibility than ever before.
Reports indicate that NFL teams will begin COVID-19 testing beginning July 27. Players who test negative for coronavirus will begin strength and conditioning training sessions. The belief is that by mid-August, NFL training camps will be almost back to normal.
Teams can begin training camp with 90 players on roster but those players will be split into two groups of 45. Each team must reduce their rosters to 80 players by August 16. From that point, teams can hold practices featuring full squads. The lower-tier players on the roster will have a challenge from day No. 1 to compete and earn a place on the team.
Games will be played behind closed doors with no fans in attendance. The financial impact of games without fans has been a major talking point this summer. It has been projected that $4 billion will be lost due to fans being unable to attend live games.
In spite of the measures being taken by the NFL, there is the possibility that the 2020 football season could be cut short if a new outbreak occurs. According to reports, players won’t earn game paychecks and bonuses if the campaign is prematurely ended. A fund will be established to guarantee players are paid the money they are entitled. In addition, players can opt out of the season. Kansas City Chiefs lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif chose to opt out of the season to work in the medical field to help fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Duvernay-Tardif is the NFL’s only medical doctor playing for a team. He will work in a long-term care facility just outside of Montreal, Quebec.