This has been a trying year for athletes and entertainers with live appearances put on hold and sporting events cancelled, postponed, or conducted with pretend fans in the stands.
While the NHL and the NBA had a fairly successful season with a minimum of disruptions, the NFL has had a great deal of difficulty with numerous players being sidelined by the Covid-19 pandemic with several games being rescheduled.
Beginning November 21, the NFL will implement some new protocols to help stem the rise in positive cases.
Players and coaches must have a negative test before entering the team facilities; daily testing will continue.
All meetings will go virtual unless pre approved for an indoor meeting or the meeting can be held outdoors.
Team personnel must limit the number of players allowed in the weight room at the same time.
Face coverings must be worn at all times inside team facilities including the practice field. This includes everyone on the field, not just coaches.
Using the locker room at any time other than on game day is strongly discouraged.
Meals served at facilities and stadiums must be of the grab and go variety with no congregating of personnel.
Teams and players are also forbidden from congregating outside of team facilities; including Thanksgiving festivities.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell spoke on the new protocols via a memo to all 32 teams saying, “the upcoming holidays, beginning with Thanksgiving next week, will introduce new risks of exposure that we need to address now. Because we have a highly sophisticated program of daily testing, we know when the virus enters our facilities, which underscores the importance of contact tracing and other steps to minimize close contacts within a facility. Recent experience has highlighted the importance of minimizing high-risk close contacts; on multiple occasions, we have seen individuals identified on that basis test positive within a short time. We have also seen many instances in which effective action by clubs to minimize these close contacts prevented the virus from spreading within the club, and avoided players or coaches being ruled out of practice or games.”