The NFL has been the major North American sport least affected by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but its season is fast approaching, which means the league has to start making some adjustments.
One change being discussed by the league, according to Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer, is when players will report for training camp.
Because teams have been conducting virtual OTA workout programs instead of working and practicing together, it's likely there will be an added layer of rust for both players and coaching staffs when they eventually reconvene.
Which led to this idea, per Breer:
The new CBA dictates that teams can report 47 days before their first regular season game (a change from the old 14-day rule), meaning the report date for most teams would be July 28. Meanwhile, the joint committee on health and safety is recommending an acclimation period before camp, given the lack of football activity these guys have had, of at least a week or two (and up to three). The good news is, the new CBA builds in a five-day acclimation period. The bad news is players may need more than that under these unique circumstances. So the league has floated the idea of an earlier report date closer to the middle of July, to give players a better chance to get their feet underneath them.
It's interesting that the recommendation comes from the league's committee on health and safety. I'd imagine players will probably be even more cautious than usual this season about their health and safety, considering the circumstances of this unusual offseason.
The league, of course, knows players and the NFLPA might not want to move that report date up, and is reportedly considering other options to provide that "acclimation" time.
One idea, per Breer, is canceling the first week of preseason games to allow for an acclimation period - though Breer called that idea an "extreme" option.
The Eagles are currently scheduled to begin their preseason games on Aug. 13, on the road against the Colts, with the second game slated for Aug. 20 on the road against the Dolphins.
As far as the Eagles' offseason program is concerned, their current set of offseason workouts is scheduled to end on June 25. The Eagles decided to keep their coaching staff at home, despite an NFL policy that would have allowed them to return to work at the NovaCare Complex last Friday.