NFL Chief Medical Officer Responds to Dr. Anthony Fauci's Concern for Upcoming Season

Ryan Hannable
June 18, 2020 - 1:14 pm

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the NIAID and member of the White House's coronavirus task force, has some concerns about the 2020 NFL season since the league does not have plans to keep players in a bubble.

"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," Fauci said to CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta. "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 NFL's Chief Medical Officer Allen Sills responded in a statement by saying the league knows it is a tough task and is working on a rapid-result testing program.

"We are developing a comprehensive and rapid-result testing program and rigorous protocols that call for a shared responsibility from everyone inside our football ecosystem," Sills said, via ESPN. "This is based on the collective guidance of public health officials, including the White House task force, the CDC, infectious disease experts, and other sports leagues.

"Make no mistake, this is no easy task. We will make adjustments as necessary to meet the public health environment as we prepare to play the 2020 season as scheduled with increased protocols and safety measures for all players, personnel and attendees. We will be flexible and adaptable in this environment to adjust to the virus as needed."

NFL teams reportedly are planning on holding training camp as scheduled in late July.