NFL teams will be allowed to start re-opening club facilities on Tuesday, May 19th, but not all clubs will be on equal footing. The New York Giants and New York Jets confirmed to NorthJersey.com that state regulations will prevent them from re-opening for the time being.
Giants VP Pat Hanlon told the website, “It takes more time than four days to reopen a facility that has been shut down for two months. We are subject to state regulations.” An unnamed source confirmed the same for the Jets to the website.
New Jersey governor Phil Murphy extended the state’s public health emergency through at least June 6th. While the extension gives the government power to impose and remove restrictions as necessary, NorthJersey.com stated that it is separate from stay-at-home orders that have closed nonessential businesses. The governor said it does not mean restrictions will be tightened or that the state is not making progress, but rather, it is to reinforce the importance of social distancing.
This leaves it unclear as to when the Giants and Jets will be able to re-open their facilities. It is worth noting the NFL’s re-opening memo restricts any coach from returning to the facility until coaches from all 32 teams can return to their facilities. States like Georgia, Texas, Florida, and Arizona, among others, have re-opened to some extent and will likely allow for club facilities to re-open. California and New Jersey are taking a more conservative approach, which will result in a later return for teams located in those states. Given differing regulations across states, keeping all 32 teams’ coaches away from the facility prevents some teams from gaining an advantage over other teams.
This is all independent of when players will return. The owners are going to have to negotiate that with the players’ union given the impact on terms and conditions of employment. The league hopes for that to start happening in June, but could not offer anything more specific at this point.