NFL teams will begin virtual offseason programs with players at home over the next two weeks after an agreement was reached Monday with the NFL Players Association, multiple media outlets reported.
According to a league memo obtained by numerous media outlets, teams may soon start classroom instruction, workouts and non-football education programs even as all club facilities remain shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The voluntary activities reportedly may begin may start as soon as April 20 for teams with new head coaches and April 27 for clubs with returning head coaches.
Offseason team activities (OTAs) were due to start April 6 for teams with new head coaches before the NFL altered its schedule.
For clubs that hold a voluntary online offseason program, participating players reportedly will get their per diem ($235 minimum per day), and they will be receive credit toward their offseason workout bonuses.
The virtual team programs may run through May 15. After that date, teams may hold offseason programs through June 26 — either in person if restrictions caused by COVID-19 have been lifted, or online if social distancing still must be followed.
NFL executive vice president for football operations Troy Vincent told media members on a conference call Monday night regarding the plan, “The term that kept coming up was ‘reasonable and responsible in the current climate.’”
It remains uncertain if the 2020 season will begin as scheduled with the Kansas City Chiefs opening Week 1 against an as-yet unnamed opponent on Thursday, Sept. 10.
—Field Level Media