The NFL Players Association is questioning the viability of opening teams' training camps later this month in areas of the country experiencing explosive growth in coronavirus cases.
"We have one question that encapsulates it all: Does it make sense for the NFL to open up training camps in 'hot spot' cities right now?" a person familiar with the NFLPA's views said Tuesday.
Most NFL teams are scheduled to report to training camps July 28. The league has considered a variety of coronavirus-related contingencies but consistently has said it is planning to stage a full season beginning as scheduled Sept. 10, with teams playing games in their own stadiums, hopefully in front of some fans. The NFL has sent detailed health protocols to teams but continues to negotiate its plan with the NFLPA, including the frequency by which players will be tested for the virus.
The ongoing deliberations between the NFL and its players' union come while other professional sports are taking steps to resume but are experiencing issues related to testing and treatment of positive cases. California, Florida, Arizona, Texas and Louisiana — all homes to NFL teams — have surging caseloads of the virus.
"We all want to play," a high-ranking official with one NFL team said. "We all want to make this work. But there are some big issues in some places of the country. That can't be ignored."
Chiefs, tackle Jones make deal
• The Kansas City Chiefs and Pro Bowl defensive tackle Chris Jones agreed on a four-year contract that could be worth up to $85 million, the latest in a lavish spending spree by the Super Bowl champions. The deal for Jones, on the heels of a record-setting 10-year extension for quarterback Patrick Mahomes, includes $60 million in guarantees, a person familiar with the terms said.
• Philadelphia signed nine-time Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters to a one-year deal and plans to use him at right guard. Peters, 38, will replace three-time Pro Bowl right guard Brandon Brooks, who tore his left Achilles' tendon last month and will miss the season.
Run on Russians continues
The New York Islanders signed goaltender of the future Ilya Sorokin to a $2 million contract for next season.
Sorokin, 24, is considered one of the top prospects at any position not currently in the NHL. Two other teams signed Russian prospects Monday who can't compete in the resumption of this season. Montreal signed defenseman Alexander Romanov for three years, and the Wild signed forward Kirill Kaprizov for two years.
All three players are burning a year by signing for this season, a way of getting to more lucrative contracts sooner.
Terry, Ducks agree
Anaheim winger Troy Terry agreed to a three-year, $4.35 million contract extension through the 2022-23 season.
Woman joins Michigan case
Cathy Kalahar, a Michigan tennis player in the 1970s, became the first female to publicly say she was sexually abused by a team doctor.
Hundreds of Michigan graduates have alleged they were molested by Robert Anderson, who died in 2008. The school has sent letters and e-mails to 300,000 former students seeking more information about Anderson.
Kalahar said Anderson assaulted her during an exam when she was a freshman in 1973. She said she told a school psychological counselor, who brushed it off as a "sexual fantasy."
"My motivation is to help other victims to come to terms, to possibly come forward," Kalahar said.
AROUND THE HORN
College sports: The SEC postponed the start of volleyball, soccer and cross-country competition through at least the end of August because of COVID-19. The league hasn't made a decision about football.
NBA: Michael Beasley left the NBA bubble after testing positive for coronavirus, according to multiple reports. He signed with the Nets five days ago and is the eighth player on the team to test positive.
Horse racing: Jockeys riding at Saratoga Race Course in New York won't be allowed to return to the track if they compete elsewhere during the summer, track officials said. In the past week at least six jockeys have tested positive for the coronavirus, including five who rode in Southern California and then competed at other tracks.