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NFL extends virtual offseason by two weeks, officially cancels any in-person events until training camp

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Some more clarity from the NFL on the offseason.

NFL: Super Bowl LIV City Views Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL is giving a little more clarity for the offseason. All teams have replaced in-person practices, OTAs, and mini-camps with virtual learning this offseason, and that was scheduled to come to an end this Friday. Instead, it’s been extended for two weeks and will end on June 26th.

The NFL has extended virtual offseason programs for teams through June 26, but no further.

Although team facilities have opened for key personnel, coaches and players rehabilitating injuries, healthy players have been barred from those complexes due to the coronavirus pandemic. The remote programs have taken the place of on-site work, and some teams already have announced they are shutting those down.

But on Thursday, the league said it will allow the virtual work for an additional 15 days.

The next step after that will be figuring out just when training camps will start. There have been differing views on that with some sources suggesting that camps could open earlier than usual, in the middle of July, to allow for an “acclimation period” for the players to get back into shape.

There is an alternate plan circulating that would cut two of the preseason games so that camps would still start at their regular time, late July, but there would be more time for players to acclimate before game situations occur. As of yet, there is no clear answer.

“We will continue working with the NFLPA to conclude the remaining protocols and finalize arrangements for the safe opening of training camps next month,” league spokesman Brian McCarthy said.

At the same time, it’s being reported that any thoughts of in-person mini-camps in late June have officially been scrapped. Training camp will be the point when players return for on-field instruction.