NFL cancels preseason, sets up COVID guidelines for training camp

The NFL has finally issued its set of guidelines for training camp as COVID cases continue to rise in some parts of the country.

These guidelines may not have been implemented if not for the concerns voiced by some players on social media.

The Bucs offensive tackle Donovan Smith was one of those who took to Twitter over the weekend to show his support for fellow players.

Smith had gone to Instagram earlier in the month and voiced his concerns about playing and reporting to training camp during the pandemic.

“Risking my health as well as my family’s health does not seem like a risk worth taking. With my first child due in 3 weeks, I can’t help but think about how will I be able to go to work and take proper precautions around 80+ people every day to then go home to be with my newborn daughter. How can a sport that requires physical contact on every snap and transferal of all types of bodily fluid EVERY SINGLE PLAY practice safe social distancing? How can I make sure I don’t bring COVID-19 back to my household?”

All training camps are scheduled to open next Tuesday, July 28th. That will not be possible with the COVID testing procedures put in place.

All players must pass two negative tests before they will be allowed to enter the facility.

If a player is tested on the 28th and the result is negative, they will need to wait 72 hours before taking another test. That would put the second test on July 31st. If that second test comes back negative, they will be allowed to enter the facility and begin workouts.

That puts the date as August 2nd or August 3rd realistically as the first day of any kind of organized workouts.

August 5th is the next important date on the calendar. That is the date that teams can begin walkthroughs. No helmets and no pads. It will be underwear football at its finest.

After an off-day on the 13th, teams may progress to wearing helmets on the 14th.

August 20th the pads can go on and that is when the preparations will begin in earnest for the 2020 season.

This will give teams a little over three weeks to get ready for their opener the weekend of September 13th.

All preseason games have been canceled. So we may see a lot of sloppy football for the first few weeks of the season.

I Don’t think anyone would complain about that this year, as everyone will just be glad to have football back.

The Buccaneers have signed three from their 2020 draft class.

 

Minnesota Golden Gophers wide receiver Tyler Johnson.  (John Autey / Pioneer Press)

 

Fifth-round pick Tyler Johnson the wide receiver from Minnesota, Sixth-round pick Khalil Davis from Nebraska, and running back Raymond Calais from Louisiana Lafayette.

Johnson started all four seasons at Minnesota and had 213 catches for 3305 yards and 33 touchdowns.

Davis had 105 tackles, 24 for loss. Davis also had 13 sacks and two forced fumbles during his five-year career.

Calais used primarily as a running back ran for 886 yards and six touchdowns in his final collegiate season

All three players signed a four year slotted rookie contract.

The Bucs still have number one pick Tristan Wirfs, second-rounder Antoine Winfield Jr., third-round pick Ke’Shawn Vaughan, and seventh-round pick Chapelle Russell unsigned as rookies are scheduled to report on Thursday.