The NFL has been afforded a luxury few other industries were able to appreciate over the last four months: time. Unlike its fellow sports leagues, the NFL was in the middle of its offseason when coronavirus shut down the country. The league had the last four months to prepare for the start of the season and plan how they would handle testing, safety precautions, and every other extremely complicated factor that comes into play when trying to put on football during a global pandemic.
It would seem they did not make the best of their time. Houston Texans rookies are supposed to report to training camp on Saturday. The NFL has told its players exactly nothing important. J.J. Watt laid out exactly what they don't know, two days out from the start of activities.
That is insane. Nobody should need it explained that knowing how testing will be employed is a rather crucial part of all this. I'm not accusing the NFL of sitting on their hands since March, but if they haven't agreed on these basic issues, what the hell have they been doing this whole time? The situation changes week-to-week, sure, but players are supposed to show up at team facilities in two days and nobody knows anything.
This smells of an immense disaster looming. Given the money and resources at the NFL's disposal, it's hard to imagine the league messes this up so badly that the players refuse to play. It certainly feels like that scenario is inching closer with each passing day, though.
Perhaps that would be for the best anyway. It would be better to have no football than to throw players into the fray with only half a plan and a hopeful outlook. Right now, the NFL doesn't even have that.