In theory, most of the NFL's 32 coaching staffs could have returned to their team facilities Friday. In practice, that hasn't been the case.
While the NFL allowed coaching staffs back at facilities Friday in states that allow such a return under their current social distancing guidelines, many staffs either have had no coaches or a small handful return to the office, according to Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer.
So, what about the New England Patriots, who operate in a state with more strict guidelines due to the coronavirus pandemic than many others in the country?
Download the MyTeams app for the latest Patriots news and analysis
Per Breer, "some" coaches were at Gillette Stadium on Friday but on a voluntary basis, and their presence will be voluntary "until further notice."
New England actually is a step ahead of several NFL teams that didn't have any coaches back at their facilities over the weekend. According to Breer, the Tennessee Titans, Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons and Baltimore Ravens are among the teams bringing coaches back this Monday, while the coaching staffs of Tom Brady's Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Los Angeles Rams aren't returning until June 15.
The Patriots' "virtual offseason" apparently has gone well to date, but their coaching staff could benefit from some face-to-face time. New England has several coaches in new roles this year, with newcomer Jedd Fisch coaching quarterbacks, Mick Lombardi filling Joe Judge's vacancy as wide receivers coach and Cole Popovich and Carmen Bricillo handling offensive line duties following Dante Scarnecchia's retirement.
It's likely many of those coaches will be back at Gillette Stadium over the next few weeks, but it sounds like they won't be obligated to be there.