By Michael Hurley, CBS dangolka
dangolka (CBS) — The NFL and NFLPA lastly reached their settlement on COVID-19 guidelines and protocols for the forthcoming season. If it seems like this settlement was scrambled collectively in a rush on the final minute, effectively, the league solely had 5 months to organize for this second, ? So give them a break.
Anyway, included within the prolonged algorithm governing gamers is a listing of “high-risk” actions within the period of the coronavirus pandemic. If gamers are discovered to have participated in any of the “high-risk” objects, that participant shall be fined or suspended for committing conduct detrimental to the crew.
Clearly, with a extremely contagious virus ruining nearly every part on this nation, it’s wise and mandatory for the NFL to impose such guidelines. And definitely, with locations like indoor night time golf equipment and indoor bars and home events being on the listing of banned actions, the league is sending a loud and clear message that participation in occasions the place the virus can simply be unfold merely is not going to be tolderated.
Bravo, NFL. You’ve carried out what Main League Baseball ought to have carried out.
There is, nonetheless, one reasonably fascinating inclusion on the listing of banned exercise — one which may increase an eyebrow or two to anyone paying shut consideration. Right here’s the fifth merchandise on the listing:
“Attending an expert sporting occasion (apart from relevant NFL video games or occasions) except the participant is seated in a separated seating part, akin to a set or proprietor’s field, is carrying PPE, and there are not more than 10 folks in that separate seating part.”
The NFL … is banning gamers … from attending … skilled sporting occasions … as a result of … the NFL … believes … that attending sporting occasions … can exacerbate the unfold … of the novel coronavirus.
After all, the NFL made certain to level out that “relevant NFL video games or occasions” are exempt from such hazard. In spite of everything, that is the mighty NFL, the place the foundations of society — and science — don’t apply. Certain, attending one other sport is harmful, however attending an NFL occasion — which for gamers means smashing into each other for a couple of hours — is totally and fully secure.
And in the event you noticed this inclusion on the listing and figured that it meant there’s no approach in heck that the league will nonetheless be making an attempt to promote as many tickets to followers in 2020, then you’re probably mistaken. Solely the Jets and Giants have dominated out followers from attending video games in 2020. The remainder of the league is placing collectively numerous contingency plans to attempt to get as many followers into their buildings as doable, as long as native governments permit it.
Out in Seattle, the plans embrace the ultra-safe state of affairs of “leaving total rows or each different seat empty.”
“Each different seat” might not precisely fly by way of spread-of-contagion prevention, however concern not: The NFL is being as secure as doable.
For these questioning, sure, it’s league-wide: followers at NFL video games this season shall be required to put on face coverings pic.twitter.com/D139KGKQ4r
— Brian McCarthy (@NFLprguy) July 22, 2020
Nicely at the very least that’s taken care of. Phew.
Granted, the NFL solely believes it’s secure for gamers to attend sporting occasions if these gamers are in a set, with a most of 10 folks, all of whom have to be carrying face coverings. Followers? Nicely, the security guidelines are totally different for followers … as a result of their cash goes towards the NFL’s backside line. Whereas sitting within the stands among the many commoners could also be harmful for NFL gamers, it’s completely secure — ehhhh, it’s secure sufficient — for the paying buyer.
That’s the message from the NFL because the league tries to navigate the ever-complicated waters of taking part in sports activities throughout a nationwide pandemic. Gamers attending a sporting occasion? Can’t threat it. Too harmful. Paying followers attending NFL video games? Let’s take some precautions but additionally let’s stuff as a lot of ’em into the constructing as we’re legally allowed to do.
As is the case with rattling close to every part involving sports activities throughout this horrible time in American historical past, you could all the time carry with you some hand sanitizer, a facial masking, and a robust dedication to cognitive dissonance if you wish to make it by means of the day and/or comply with the day-to-day goings-on of the Nationwide Soccer League.
You may e-mail Michael Hurley or discover him on Twitter @michaelFhurley.