In one of the least shocking developments, NFL Executive Vice President Jeff Pash — he of Deflategate fame — told reporters on Thursday that teams have been informed training camps are expected to open on their normal schedule, which would mean a veteran reporting date of July 28th.
But there have been two developments that could call that into question: the NFL already canceled the Hall of Fame Game and Weekend, and a prominent player raised the possibility that he may not play — depending on the league's safety plans.
Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins told CNN the risk "has to be really eliminated" before he would be willing to return. Jenkins is a 12-year veteran and on the NFLPA's executive committee.
JUST NOW: "Football is a nonessential business and so we don't need to do it. So the risk, you know, has to be really eliminated before we -- before I would feel comfortable with going back. "
— John Berman (@JohnBerman) June 25, 2020
"Football is a nonessential business and so we don't need to do it," Jenkins said. "... The NBA is a lot different than the NFL because they can actually quarantine all of their players or whoever is going to participate."
"We have over 2,000 players, even more coaches and staff. We can't do that. So we'll end up being kind of on this trust system, the honor system, where we just have to hope that guys are social distancing and things like that. And that puts all of us at risk, not only us as players and who's in the building, but when you go home to your families. You know, I have parents that I don't want to get sick.
"And I think until we get to the point where we have protocols in place, and until we get to a place as a country where we feel safe doing it, we have to understand that football is a nonessential business. And so we don't need to do it. And so the risk has to be really eliminated before we -- before I -- would feel comfortable with going back."
As far as the Hall of Fame Game, it wasn't logistically going to work for two teams to travel to Canton, Ohio to travel for a game. This could just be a precursor to the NFL eliminating two preseason games to limit the risk while the regular season remains the goal.
If two preseason games are eliminated, that will give the NFL more time to come back and would more easily allow camp to be pushed back. That, and many veteran players like Jenkins having some doubts ahead of a concrete plan, has led some NFL sources to believe camp could