The NFL Players Association medical director advised against players conducting voluntary group workouts amid rising cases of the coronavirus in multiple states and a day after an unnamed 49ers player reportedly tested positive for the virus.
“Please be advised that it is our consensus medical opinion that in light of the increase in COVID-19 cases in certain states that no players should be engaged in practicing together in private workouts,” Dr. Thom Mayer said in a statement published Saturday. “Our goal is to have all players and your families as healthy as possible in the coming months.”
Some 49ers players conducted group workouts this offseason at San Jose State and in Nashville, Tenn. Sixteen 49ers players were known to be in Tennessee working out, and every player working out reportedly was tested Friday. Santa Clara County allowed “all outdoor recreational activities that do not involve in physical contact, with social distancing and with up to one other household” on June 5. Nashville’s current guidance reopened sports fields and calls for people to “[modify] or limit group fitness activities to facilitate proper social distancing, to the extent possible.”
Arizona, Florida, Nevada and Texas all have reported record single-day increases in coronavirus cases this week. Those four states account for seven of the NFL’s 32 teams. A Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach tested positive for the coronavirus and two others were quarantined, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Thursday.
[RELATED: Recruiting time? 49ers’ Williams tags Jets’ Adams in IG pic]
The NFL has said it plans to start its season on time with fans in the stands. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States’ leading expert on infectious diseases, said the 2020 NFL season might not happen without keeping players in isolation.
“Unless players are essentially in a bubble — insulated from the community and they are tested nearly every day — it would be very hard to see how football is able to be played this fall,” the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said earlier this week. “If there is a second wave, which is certainly a possibility and which would be complicated by the predictable flu season, football may not happen this year.”
The United States has over 2.2 million confirmed cases, and nearly 120,000 people have died.
[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]
NFLPA doctor advises no group workouts after 49ers’ positive coronavirus test originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area