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Memo sent to teams for path to reopening facilities

A route to reopening team facilities has been laid out to all 32 NFL teams.

Commissioner Roger Goodell sent out a memo Wednesday laying out protocols on how facilities may reopen, which includes consent from state government officials, establishment of a club infection response team, social distancing and other measures, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported.

All club facilities have been closed since March 25 to further efforts of combating the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, the NFL has outlined protocols and procedures on the path toward opening them back up.

"The protocols are intended to allow for a safe and phased reopening," Goodell wrote. "The first phase would involve a number of non-player personnel. ... No players would be permitted in the facility except to continue a course of therapy and rehabilitation that was underway when facilities were initially closed.

"Clubs should take steps to have these protocols in place by Friday, May 15 in anticipation of being advised when club facilities will formally reopen."

Also of note, the principle that no team can reopen unless every team is eligible -- likely based upon respective state government's decisions -- remains in place, per a statement from league spokesman Brian McCarthy obtained by Pelissero.

"That principle remains intact," McCarthy's statement began. "This memo outlines the actions clubs will take to have the protocols in place by May 15. After that time, clubs will be advised when facilities could formally reopen. These steps include the clubs reviewing their plans with the appropriate state and local officials. It's anticipated there will be further discussion on the reopening of facilities at the May 19 league owners virtual meeting."

Among the protocols are wearing a cloth face covering or medical-style mask, and daily screening of employees and visitors who must have their temperature taken and answer questions.

In addition, Goodell noted that the NFL is actively working with the NFL Players Association on the protocols that would enable player access and expected to have what that entails "fairly soon."

Also in the memo, Goodell discouraged public comments from club officials concerning hypotheticals in regard to the 2020 season.

"It is impossible to project what the next few months will bring," Goodell stated.

But there are now protocols and a path set forth for reopening.

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