NFL Coronavirus: Eagles Get Big Update on Returning to Work

Doug Pederson

Getty What does the future hold for Doug Pederson after he left the Philadelphia Eagles.

Head coach Doug Pederson and his coaching staff are allowed to return to the Eagles’ practice facility on June 5. So can select employees and personnel staff, according to new guidelines released by the NFL.

While coaches are allowed back to the NovaCare Complex, per NFL rules, players are not yet allowed back to their respective team facilities except for rehab purposes. The Eagles announced that all players and coaches are going to continue to work from home as their 12-week “virtual workout” program has been a rousing success. That being said, selected team employees will begin returning to the office on June 8.

“Coaches and players will continue their preparations for the 2020 season remotely, with the goal of returning to the facility for training camp in July,” the Eagles said in a statement, via the team’s official website. “We look forward to taking this step to re-open our facilities. We will remain in close communication with the league and public officials as we monitor developments, and will follow all necessary guidelines and precautions to maintain a healthy and safe environment for our employees.”

On Thursday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter shared a memo that the league sent out to all 32 teams. In it, the NFL outlined that up to 100 employees may return to work starting on June 5 and assumes that number is in accordance with state protocols. The Eagles are in compliance after state and city officials approved both Pennsylvania and Philadelphia to move ahead with the “yellow phase” of their reopening plan.

Here is a portion of the memo sent out by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell:

Coaches and other football staff, particularly those who may be in a higher risk category or who have concerns about their health conditions, are expected to speak with the club medical staff or personal physician about any special precautions or other accommodations that may be appropriate for their particular circumstances. In addition, we will work with club medical staffs to implement a program of COVID-19 testing for the coaching staff and other football personnel prior to players returning to club facilities.

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Doug Pederson ‘Full Steam’ Ahead for Training Camp

Last year, the Eagles reported for training camp on July 24 and held their first practice on July 25. While no timeline has been given for 2020, with the COVID-19 pandemic still lingering, it should be around those same dates. Pederson told reporters in mid-May that he was preparing as if everything would begin on time.

“I’m preparing as if we’re going to be back in our building by training camp,” Pederson said. “Nothing is definite, nothing has been set, obviously, but I’m preparing that way to be back in the building hopefully in mid-July so we can be on the grass. That’s my preparation. That’s my mindset right now as I prepare for training camp. That’s one of the things — we get these guys back, it’s got to be full steam ahead.”

When asked specifically on how he intended to keep both players and staff safe, Pederson deferred to the team’s chief medical officer Dr. Arsh Dhanota. They had been working on a plan to test individuals for the novel coronavirus, and maybe even incorporate some form of social distancing.

“I don’t have a definite answer for you at this time. I wish I did,” Pederson said at the time. “It’s something that I think when Dr. Arsh has more information, maybe when there’s more testing available, just his plan. I lean on him because he’s in the know. He understands this virus, this pandemic, and what it can do to the human body. So, at this point, I don’t have a definite answer for you.”

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