NFL finally caves on player demands for daily COVID-19 testing
The NFL and the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) have resolved one of the biggest question marks heading into the upcoming season. The NFL has finally agreed to demands to conduct daily COVID-19 testing for the coaches and players.
Mark Maske of the Washington Post reports that the daily testing will last for a minimum of two weeks and that it thereafter can be adjusted. The players, however, won’t want it to be adjusted.
The players had pushed aggressively for the NFL to conduct daily testing. The league had wanted to test less frequently, in part because there are questions regarding the utility of daily testing. Results won’t be available for roughly 24 hours either so it dampens its effectiveness a bit. But obviously, testing more if better than less.
The reason that the coronavirus testing is only limited is that it is priced at an expensive tag. As one source explained it to Pro Football Talk, BioReference Laboratories and the NFL have a general deal for 120 tests per day. The flat rate fee is then divided up by the 32 teams. Extra tests are available to each team at a rate of $125 per test.
Without the availability of these tests, all the players on the field can easily be infected with the virus without them knowing it. This can potentially put the safety of everyone in the league in jeopardy.
The two sides may have crossed one-off but there are still a lot of uncertainties left to address on the table. Only time can tell if these will be agreed upon before the start of the full-roster training camps on July 28.