NFL putting teams on intensive COVID protocols

3:10 PM ET

Starting this Saturday, all NFL teams must operate under the league’s intensive COVID-19 protocols for the remainder of this season, according to a league memo sent to teams Wednesday afternoon and obtained by ESPN.

Requirements under the intensive protocols, which 28 of the league’s 32 teams have already experienced at some point this season, include virtual team meetings and the wearing of masks by all players and staff at all times while at the facility, including during practice.

“It has been said many times that our 2020 season cannot be ‘normal’ because nothing about this year is normal,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell wrote in the memo. “Flexibility and adaptability have been critical to our success to date and we must continue with that approach.”

The league said it made the decision to impose the intensive protocols leaguewide because of the heightened recent spread of COVID-19 around the country as well as the data it has been collecting all year regarding close contacts.

All players and staff this year are required to wear contact tracing devices while in the facility and while traveling, so that the league and union can quickly identify close contacts of an individual

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