New England Patriots

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98.5 The Sports Hub staff report

Citing a spike in COVID-19 cases around the league, NFLPA medical director Dr. Thomas Mayer has released a statement via the PA advising players to stop holding group workouts together.

“Please be advised that it is our consensus medical opinion that in light of the increase in COVID-19 cases in certain states that no players should be engaged in practicing together in private workouts,” Mayer’s statement read. “Our goal is to have all players and your families as healthy as possible in the coming months.”

Mayer’s statement comes following a week that’s seen positive tests involving members of the Cowboys (including superstar running back Zeke Elliott), Texans, 49ers, and Broncos. The league may have hit its breaking point within the last 24 hours, though, as it was revealed on Friday that a Bucs assistant had tested positive for the coronavirus, while other members of the organization were quarantined. On Saturday, it was revealed that two players on the Buccaneers had contracted the virus.

It’s worth noting that while the NFLPA cannot outright ban its players from getting together, their advice here certainly comes with an eye for the future, as Mayer noted that this suggestion comes with the parties wanting to have the smoothest operation possible when teams begin to report to camp next month.

“We are working on the best mitigation procedures at team facilities for both training camps and the upcoming season, and believe that it is in the best interest of all players that we advise against any voluntary joint practices before training camp commences,” said Mayer.

Twenty-eight of the NFL’s 32 teams, including the New England Patriots, are slated to open training camp on July 28.