Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh is not a fan of the new NFL guidelines for reopening practice facilities, which he termed as “humanly impossible” on Thursday.
The mandates call for physical distancing in the locker room as well as in weight rooms and meeting rooms.
“I’ve seen all the memos on that, and to be quite honest with you, it’s impossible what they’re asking us to do. Humanly impossible,” Harbaugh said during an interview with Baltimore radio station 105.7 The Fan. “So, we’re going to do everything we can do. We’re going to space, we’re going to have masks. But, you know, it’s a communication sport. We have to able to communicate with each other in person. We have to practice.”
The on-field part of the process is definitely concerning to Harbaugh, who has trouble seeing how things can work during training camp.
“I’m pretty sure the huddle is not going to be 6-feet spaced,” Harbaugh told the station. “Are guys going to shower one at a time all day? Are guys going to lift weights one at a time all day? These are things the league and the (players association) needs to get a handle on and needs to get agreed with some common sense so we can operate in a 13-hour day in training camp that they’re giving us and get our work done.
“That’s the one thing, you can tell by my voice, I’m a little frustrated with what I’m hearing there. And I think they need to get that pinned down a little better.”
Harbaugh said the Ravens will abide by whatever the regulations are despite the flaws he sees.
“I think good people, smart people are involved in this,” Harbaugh said. “But the way I’m reading these memos right now, you throw your hands up and you go, ‘What the heck? There’s no way this can be right.’”
Harbaugh added that he hopes the other 31 teams also follow the guidelines.
“As a coach, you don’t want to hear that you’re limiting your operations as far as preparing your team and then you hear 10 other teams aren’t paying attention to the rules and then there’s no consequence for that,” Harbaugh said. “Then they have an advantage on you. That’s what I don’t want to see. I just think it needs to be fair and it needs to be reasonable, and I think they’ll find a way to do that.”
—Field Level Media