As the NFL offseason rolls on and the chances of a minicamp become more and more unlikely, the league is reportedly in talks of making another concession. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the league and the NFL Players Association have begun talks about shortening the preseason.
“Nothing finalized or imminent, but multiple team executives informed of talks currently believe they could end up playing two preseason games, rather than four,” Pelissero wrote in a tweet Wednesday afternoon.
The reasoning, per Pelissero, is to give teams “a longer ‘ramp-up’ period” and allow medical experts to finalize game-day protocols for COVID-19 this year. Earlier in the week, the NFL sent a lengthy memo to teams outlining proper protocols to deal with the current outbreak, which include distancing lockers at least six feet apart and specifics on proper hygiene and food preparation for the team staff.
As of right now, the Detroit Lions are scheduled to start the preseason August 13, with a trip to New England to face the Patriots. While the two teams were expected to hold joint practices, the NFL decided there would be no joint practices this year between any teams.
Lions preseason schedule:
Week 1 - Thursday, August 13 — at New England Patriots — 7:30 p.m. ET
Week 2 - Thursday, Aug. 20 — New York Jets — 8 p.m. (ESPN)
Week 3 - Thursday, Aug. 27 — at Miami Dolphins — 7:30 p.m. ET
Week 4 - Thursday, Sep. 3 — Buffalo Bills - 7:30 p.m. ET