dangolka (CBS) — Patriots coaching camp is underway in Foxboro — form of. Gamers have taken physicals and, extra importantly, their COVID-19 checks, however they aren’t enjoying any soccer but. That gained’t come till later this month, when the workforce would normally be enjoying preseason soccer.
On this unusual yr that’s 2020, nothing is regular. For anybody. And for Patriots gamers, that features all the pieces inside and outside of Gillette Stadium.
The locker room, normally a jumbled mess of our bodies, is now extensive open. Participant conferences have been damaged up into smaller teams. And gamers will now not pile in to eat lunch collectively within the cafeteria.
Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic has led to uncertainties in every single place, those that have reported for responsibility at Gillette Stadium stated Wednesday that they actually really feel secure with all of the workforce has completed to assist maintain gamers wholesome and forestall the unfold of the virus.
“It’s Day 2. We’re nonetheless feeling our method round however you do really feel secure,” linebacker Ja’Whaun Bentley stated throughout his Zoom name with reporters. “You do really feel like (efforts) have been made to verify we really feel as secure as potential. Procedures and issues like which have undoubtedly been modified in additional methods than one. That’s a constructive factor.”
“I haven’t put a helmet on since final season. It’s distinctive and it’s completely different,” stated offensive lineman Joe Thuney. “However our power and conditioning workers does an ideal job working us into that so we’re prepared when the total pads go on… Everyone seems to be locked on and we understand it’s a distinct yr, we have now to be on prime of our stuff.”
“It’s lots completely different, but it surely’s mandatory,” added cornerback Jonathan Jones.
Jones was crucial of the NFL only a few weeks in the past, because the league was setting out tips for what gamers can and might’t do on the sector. One of many new guidelines was eliminating the “jersey swap” that has turn out to be a standard follow after most video games. Jones took to Twitter to say the league had some greater points to take care of:
I don’t know who wants to listen to this however you possibly can’t social distance soccer…
— J Jones (@Jonathan_Jones2) July 14, 2020
On Wednesday, the nook clarified what he meant with the Tweet, and expressed some confidence within the NFL and the adjustments it has put in place.
“Once I tweeted that, it was extra about a number of the protocols they began imposing just like the jersey swap and issues like that,” Jones stated. “So far as being within the facility and being in conferences, they’ve gone to nice lengths to make it possible for we’re secure in these regards.
“Referring to my tweet, it was extra, if you’re on the market on the sector there’s no social distancing in that,” he added. “So, attempting to remove jersey swapping and issues like that, I type of noticed no level to that.”
Due to the considerations over enjoying soccer throughout a pandemic, over 50 gamers have opted out of the 2020 season — together with eight Patriots. After attending to see the adjustments made to the New England amenities the previous few days, he doesn’t sound like he’ll decide out forward of Thursday’s deadline.
However Jones additionally voiced some concern about these within the NFL who is probably not taking the pandemic critically. It’s these gamers who will put the season, different gamers, and different gamers’ households in danger.
“The important thing to the season is ensuring everybody buys in and retains everybody secure. It doesn’t simply have an effect on your workforce, it impacts your workforce’s households. Now we have to carry one another accountable to verify everyone seems to be attempting to remain secure and maintain everybody else secure,” he stated.