Well this should be interesting. The NFL continues with the 2020 training camp as planned, without changing the reporting dates for all 32 teams.
Many COVID-19 protocols, including daily tests during the first two weeks of the training camp, are in effect as the league tries to start its season amid the coronavirus pandemic. But as the NFL now sees from MLB, a COVID-19 outbreak within at least one of the 32 team bells feels almost inevitable.
MORE: Why NFL preseason games are canceled
The NFL remains hopeful that it can start at least the 2020 NFL season on time, in part due to the changed training camp schedule agreed between the league and the NFL Players Association. While reporting dates did not change, the training camp schedule that all 32 teams will follow now includes periods of COVID-19 testing and acclimation, so players can safely begin full contact practice in mid-August.
Safe is of course a relative term during a global pandemic. Longer than usual acclimatization and run-up periods in theory should help players avoid injuries when padded workouts begin, but it’s not clear how the virus will affect the training camp schedule and how players can prepare for the season.
We also know that there will be no NFL preseason games in 2020, so teams will move directly from practice to week 1 of the regular season, subject to setbacks. The league agreed to drop practice games from the schedule to make room for the extensive training camp the players asked for.
Below is everything you need to know about NFL training camp schedules for 2020, including reporting dates, the details of each period of the training camp, and the locations for all 32 teams.
NFL training camp dates from 2020
- Rookies report: 21 July
- Quarterbacks and injured players report: July 23
- Experienced players report: July 28
- Full-contact practices begin: August 17
The NFL sent a memo to all 32 teams in mid-July to confirm the above reporting data for 2020 NFL training camps and Commissioner Roger Goodell’s announcement on July 24 made sure that July 28 would remain the final reporting date on that list.
But with the NFL agreeing to include such a long acclimatization period of strength and conditioning into the 2020 training camp schedule, quilted practices – or what most consider a real “training camp” – won’t start until August 17.
The exceptions to the NFL’s standard training camp schedule are the Leaders and Texans, whose players were allowed to register early and start practicing three days earlier as they will play in the regular season opener of 2020 on Thursday, September 10, three days before the Sunday slate of the week 1 games.
“The NFL clubs and the NFL Players Association have approved an agreement that broadly resolves all outstanding issues regarding the opening of training camps and the start of the 2020 season. Training camps begin as planned,” Goodell said in a statement. “We have worked together to develop a comprehensive set of protocols to minimize the risk to fans, players and club and league staff. These plans have been led by NFL and NFLPA medical directors and have been reviewed and approved by independent medical professionals. and public health experts, including the CDC, and many state and local public health officials.
“The season will undoubtedly bring new and additional challenges, but we are committed to playing a safe and complete 2020 season, culminating in the Super Bowl.”
It’s worth noting that the CBA gives teams the right to set their own reporting dates if they prefer to report later, but a team that does this risks putting themselves at a competitive disadvantage.
NFL training camp schedules 2020
With the exception of the Chiefs and Texans, all NFL teams will hold 2020 training camps according to the same schedule. While details such as training / practice times and other logistics will vary from team to team, the NFL and NFLPA have agreed to a specific timeline that includes acclimation and lead-in periods before teams can start practicing with pads.
Below is the training camp schedule that all NFL teams will follow. (Chiefs and Texans’ training room schedules are played days earlier than the dates below.)
|Dates||Period of time|
|July 28-31||COVID-19 testing and virtual meetings|
|August 1-2||Distribution of physics and equipment|
|August 3-11||Acclimatization period|
|August 12-16||Gradual start-up period|
|August 17 – Sept. 6||Contact integration period (practice)|
The NFLPA has been pushing so long between the training camp reporting dates and the padded workouts because the entire offseason program is set to end nearly in 2020. The players wanted to give themselves the best chance to get into football form and avoid injuries.
Below is a more detailed breakdown of the five periods in the 2020 training camp schedule.
COVID-19 testing and virtual meetings (July 28-31)
- July 28: COVID-19 tests and virtual meetings
- July 29: COVID-19 tests and virtual meetings
- July 30: virtual meetings
- July 31: COVID-19 tests and virtual meetings
Physics and Equipment (August 1-2)
After everyone has gone through a round of initial COVID-19 tests and subsequent isolation, those who have tested negative continue with the basics of training camp preparation.
This is also the period when the daily COVID-19 tests begin. The NFL allows players to test once a day for the first two weeks of the camp, and after two weeks, if the number of positive tests is less than five percent, tests are conducted every other day.
Acclimatization period (August 3-11)
- An hour of weight room and an hour of conditioning on the field
- Total strength and conditioning (small groups under 15) duration limited to two hours
- No conditioning tests
- Only strength and conditioning coaches for strength and conditioning exercises
- Power and conditioning on the field subject to Phase 1 rules (QBs, receivers, kickers, gamblers and long snappers are allowed to use footballs)
- In addition to strength and conditioning, walkthroughs were allowed for up to one hour on each of the first four days and up to 75 minutes on each of the last four days
- August 8 is an off day
Gradual start-up period (August 12-16)
- Maximum 3 1/2 hours on the field per day
- The first workout starts at 90 minutes with a maximum increase of 15 minutes a day to a daily maximum of 120 minutes
- Rest of the daily 3 1/2 hour on-field time limit applied to walkthrough
- August 12-13: Phase 2 Activities; helmets and approved protective shirts are allowed
- August 14-16: non-padded practice days (no live contact, all usual practice activities); helmets, spiders, shells allowed
- August 15 is an off day
Contact integration period (August 17 – September 6)
- Duration starts at 90 minutes with 15 minute daily increments
- No increase or decrease in duration after a bad day
- Daily time limits prescribed by CBA
- Up to 14 padded exercises
The first game of the season in the regular season, Chiefs vs. Texans, is scheduled for Thursday, September 10, and the rest of the week from week 1 is scheduled for the following Sunday and Monday.
NFL training camp locations
Although the schedule for the NFL training camp was agreed at the last minute, the NFL knew a long time ago that training camp training should be banned this season. So on June 2, the league told all teams that training camps would be held only at team facilities this year.
That announcement also meant that there would be no joint practices during training camps by 2020.
So teams like the Steelers and Cowboys traditionally send their training camps to St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa., Respectively. And bringing Oxnard, California will have to stay in the city for the rest of their training camps in 2020. Last year, 10 teams set out on at least part of their training camps.
Below is the list of all 32 facilities of the NFL team.
|Arizona Cardinals||State Farm Stadium||Glendale, Ariz.|
|Atlanta Falcons||Atlanta Falcons Training Facility||Flowery Branch, Ga.|
|Baltimore Ravens||Under Armor Performance Center||Owings Mills, Md.|
|Buffalo Bills||ADPRO Training Center / New Era Field||Orchard Park, NY|
|Carolina Panthers||Bank of America Stadium||Charlotte, NC|
|Chicago Bears||Halas Hall||Lake Forest, Ill.|
|Cincinnati Bengals||Paul Brown Stadium||Cincinnati, Ohio|
|Cleveland Browns||Cleveland Browns training complex||Berea, Ohio|
|Dallas Cowboys||The star in Frisco||Frisco, Texas|
|Denver Broncos||UCHealth Training Center||Englewood, Colo.|
|Detroit Lions||Detroit Lions Training Center||Allen Park, Mich.|
|Green Bay Packers||Lambeau Field||Green Bay, Wisc.|
|Houston Texans||Houston Methodist Training Center||Houston, Texas|
|Indianapolis Colts||Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center||Indianapolis, Ind.|
|Jacksonville Jaguars||TIAA Bank Field||Jacksonville, Fla.|
|Chiefs of Kansas City||Arrowhead Stadium||Kansas City, Mo.|
|Los Angeles chargers||Jack Hammett Sports Complex||Costa Mesa, California.|
|Los Angeles Rams||Cal Lutheran Facility||Thousand Oaks, California.|
|Miami Dolphins||Baptist Health Training Facility||Davie, Fla.|
|Minnesota Vikings||TCO Performance Center||Eagan, Minn.|
|New York Giants||Quest Diagnostics training facility||East Rutherford, NJ|
|New York Jets||Atlantic Health Jets training center||Florham Park, NJ|
|Patriots of New England||Gillette Stadium||Foxborough, Mass.|
|Saints in New Orleans||Training facility in New Orleans Saints||Metairie, La.|
|Oakland Raiders||Raiders headquarters||Henderson, Nev.|
|Philadelphia Eagles||NovaCare Complex||Philadelphia, Pa.|
|Pittsburgh Steelers||Heinz Field||Pittsburgh, Pa.|
|San Francisco 49ers||SAP Performance Facility||Santa Clara, California.|
|Seattle Seahawks||Virginia Mason Athletic Center||Renton, Wash.|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||AdventHealth Training Center||Tampa, Fla.|
|Tennessee Titans||Saint Thomas Sports Park||Nashville, Tenn.|
|Washington football team||Washington Football Team Training Facility||Ashburn, Va.|