As the NFL prepares for its 2020 season amid the worsening COVID-19 pandemic, many players and coaches are concerned about their safety during training camp and the preseason. To address some of those concerns, the NFL is reportedly preparing a massive program for COVID-19 testing.
NFL will test players, family members for COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic is causing teams around the league to be very nervous about the 2020 season with just a few weeks before players report for training camp. While the NFL is still working on its testing protocols, one part of the league’s guidelines would lead to the NFL going through an extraordinary amount of tests.
According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the NFL will test players and their family members for the coronavirus. The league’s goal would be to ensure that their athletes and any persons living with the player don’t have the virus, creating a safe environment at the team facility and at home.
The NFL’s system would see the use of two COVID-19 tests. First, a nasal swab test to determine if the person has the virus. Second, a test for antibodies that uses the fingertip. The league reportedly wants to get results after approximately 24 hours, a lofty goal given the number of samples that would need to be tested.
How many NFL players have tested positive for COVID-19?
Even before players report for training camp, the NFL has seen a small outbreak of the coronavirus among its personnel. In June, it was estimated that a third of NFL teams had at least one player test positive for COVID-19.
- Multiple Tampa Bay Buccaneers players tested positive for the virus.
- An assistant coach on Tampa Bay’s staff contracted the coronavirus.
- Ezekiel Elliott, along with multiple Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans’ players, tested positive.
- At least one San Francisco 49ers player tested positive after a group workout.
- Denver Broncos star Von Miller and safety Kareem Jackson each got COVID-19.
- Los Angeles Rams center Brian Allen was the first NFL player to test positive.
- New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton was the first known person in the NFL to get the coronavirus.
While the NFL is still working on finalizing its health and safety guidelines, it’s already been determined that any player who tests positive during the season will miss multiple weeks.