Despite the growing number of COVID-19 cases in a high number of states, the 2020 NFL season is still expected to start in less than three months.
There’s also going to be some greater flexibility for teams. The NFL previously increased the size of game day rosters from 53 to 55. It also increased practice squads to a dozen per team. That might not be the end of it.
NFL considering increasing practice squad sizes to 16 for the 2020 season
What stands out the most is the fact that this would mean nearly 130 more jobs for football players in the NFL. Veteran free agents and undrafted rookies getting another opportunity.
COVID-19 and the NFL
The second thing that stands out is rather obvious. The NFL is preparing for the likelihood that players will test positive for COVID-19 during the season.
We saw a number of Houston Texans and Dallas Cowboys players test positive earlier this week, star running back Ezekiel Elliott included. Teams need to have more flexibility in case this repeats itself during the season.
Some teams have already indicated that they’re thinking about keeping a quarterback in quarantine throughout the season. If practice squads are expanded to 16, players at other important positions might also find themselves in quarantine.
Will the 2020 NFL season go on as planned?
Recent upticks of COVID-19 cases in states such as California, Texas, Arizona and Florida represents a troubling trend.
Initially, there was concern that the NFL season would be impacted by an expected second wave of the virus during the fall and winter. Now that we’re past Memorial Day and still in the midst of the first wave, that’s magnified even further.
Like with every other pro sports league, the NFL is a victim of circumstance. It’s all about how the United States battles COVID-19 and whether the curve is flattened here soon.
If so, this piece of news is great for dozens of players who could have their NFL dreams fulfilled.