As NFL players across the country prepare to report for training camp in the coming days and weeks, the negotiations between the league and the union are ongoing regarding safety and the ability to even have a season. Sunday several players across the league participated in a concerted messaging effort on social media, with players posting that they want to be on the field this fall using the hashtag #WantToPlay. Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks was among those participated in the messaging campaign, stating flat out that at the present time the NFL has no plan to address player health and family safety.
I am concerned.— Russell Wilson (@DangeRussWilson) July 19, 2020
My wife is pregnant.@NFL Training camp is about to start..
And there’s still No Clear Plan on Player Health & Family Safety.
We want to play football but we also want to protect our loved ones. #WeWantToPlay
However, the message to the league was that they want to play in an environment that is as safe as possible given the prevailing conditions across the country.
Thus, Monday morning in the ongoing negotiations between the two sides, the league has reportedly moved off its position of asking for two preseason games, offering to meet the union in the middle with its request for no preseason games.
The NFL’s latest proposal to players includes just one preseason game, rather than two, sources say.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) July 20, 2020
Players still want no preseason games and a longer acclimation period. But a sign the sides are working and getting closer to a plan for 2020.
More now on @gmfb @nflnetwork
According to NFL Insider Tom Pelissero, the lone preseason game would be played during Week 3 of the preseason, which would be August 27 through August 30. That scheduling would allow for teams to have around a week between the game and roster cuts, which are scheduled for September 5 at 4:00 New York Time. Additionally, it would be two weeks between the preseason game and the Week 1 season openers on September 13 for most teams (September 10 for the Kansas City Chiefs and Houston Texans).
There are still a whole host of issues to be worked out between the two sides prior to rookies reporting to training camp Tuesday. That said, the ongoing negotiations appear to be yielding progress, but whether it is progress sufficient to meet the demands of the union in the coming days remains to be seen.