Will the 2020 NFL season start for the Jacksonville Jaguars with the team playing any preseason games?
The Jacksonville Jaguars were scheduled to play four preseason games when the league released the regular-season schedules this offseason. That number was shrunk by two games this past week as the spread of the Coronavirus continues to affect the sports world. Now, it looks like the NFLPA is lobbying for no preseason games ahead of the 2020 regular season.
According to Nick Shook of NFL.com and other sources, the topic of avoiding preseason games altogether has come up.
"“NFLPA membership voted on a conference call this week in favor of not playing any preseason games ahead of the 2020 season, NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported Friday,” Shook wrote."
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The state of sports in America is changing by the minute, not just with the NFL, but in MLB, NBA and NHL. The safety of the player and everyone involved continues to be at the forefront of everyone’s minds as the four major sports leagues try to return to normalcy in the coming weeks.
As Tom Pelissero of NFL Network wrote on his Twitter account, the NFLPA still wants the preseason games eliminated from consideration for the upcoming season. One of the ideas proposed would be a workout schedule that would lead directly into the NFL season where teams would not face each other until Week 1.
- 3 days: medical/equipment
- 21 days: strength & conditioning
- 10 days: unpadded practice
- 14 days: practice (10 max/8 padded)
The Jacksonville Jaguars have yet to hold any kind of true practice session and they are awaiting the arrival of training camp with the other 31 NFL teams. The offseason program the franchise has taken part in has been all virtual, with players learning offensive and defensive installations through video conferencing. Players have not been allowed back in TIAA Bank Field and the 32 NFL teams have followed protocols handed down by the NFL to ensure safety practices in accordance with state and federal guidelines.
The league is also still working to decide if fans will be allowed to attend games and remain safe through social distancing guidelines.
"“The vote came as a result of discussion within union leadership on whether it would be smart to play any preseason games, and after two days of time to mull the current situation regarding a return to work amid the COVID-19 pandemic, players decided in favor of a longer runway for preparation for the NFL’s regular season,” Shook added.“The NFL, meanwhile, maintains a desire to trim the preseason schedule from four games to two in an effort to create a longer ramp-up period for players.”"