The coronavirus, for now, won’t keep football from moving forward with its regular plans
Not only are football fans desperate for some sports action, but the NFL also is not willing to wait any longer for the next season to start. According to Chris Mortensen from ESPN, his sources have told him that the NFL is planning to release its 2020 schedule by May 9, just as it has been planned all along. If it is necessary, adjustments can be made, but there are no plans for postponing the season due to the coronavirus pandemic.
During a FaceTime call last week with Ankur Jain, CEO of Kairos and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, the league’s boss confirmed that the NFL is planning to move forward with this year’s season. “The NFL is planning to play,” Goodell said in the call. “That’s our hope, and that’s our planning to date.”
According to Goodell’s declarations, he believes that the NFL running will help the US to “heal” from the terrible effects of the coronavirus pandemic. “We can help bring our communities together. We can provide hope. We can provide a distraction from the everyday issues and show people that there is a future out there and that we’re all going to be part of that,” he said.
Luckily for the NFL, the season hasn’t started yet, which is giving the organization time to adapt if needed. At least for now, all team facilities received orders to shut down due to the pandemic. The NFL did manage to follow the free agency process and the NFL draft will be taking place virtually with everybody connected from their homes.
There was also another agreement that was decided this same week regarding details for a possible virtual offseason for both teams and players. The offseason program is voluntary for players, but teams that have new coaches can start contacting players to follow up on their program now; the teams with returning coaches can do so on April 27.