Ravens head coach says current NFL coronavirus guidelines 'impossible'

Ravens head coach says current NFL coronavirus guidelines 'impossible'
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Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said the recent NFL coronavirus guidelines would be "impossible" to implement.

Harbaugh on Thursday raised concerns over the guidelines sent to the 32 NFL teams outlining procedures for reopening practice facilities, which had been closed due to the pandemic, ESPN reported.

During an interview on 105.7 The Fan, Harbaugh called the procedures "humanly impossible," saying, "I've seen all the memos on that, and to be quite honest with you, it's impossible, what they're asking us to do."

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The Ravens head coach added that "we're going to do everything we can do," including the wearing of masks and social distancing. Then he added, "But, you know, it's a communication sport. We have to be able to communicate with each other in person. We have to practice."

The guidelines underscore requirements such as social distancing in the locker, weight and meeting rooms and cafeterias.

"I think good people, smart people are involved in this," Harbaugh said. "But the way I'm reading these memos right now, you throw your hands up and you go, 'What the heck? There's no way this can be right.'"

Harbaugh expressed concern that the guidelines may not offer ample enough room for teams to get work done even in 13-hour training camp days, raising points such as "I'm pretty sure the huddle is not going to be 6-feet spaced" and questioning if players will only be allowed to shower or lift weights one person at a time.

Camps are slated to open for players in late July, and the first preseason game featuring the Dallas Cowboys versus the Pittsburgh Steelers is set for Aug. 6.

"As a coach, you don't want to hear that you're limiting your operations as far as preparing your team and then you hear 10 other teams aren't paying attention to the rules and then there's no consequence for that," Harbaugh said. "Then they have an advantage on you. That's what I don't want to see."

Harbaugh said he expects the NFL to devise a "more realistic and practical" safety plan by the start of the training camp season, but said his team would do as good a job or better than other teams to maintain the current guidelines' standards.