By Joe Pantorno
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced on Tuesday morning that professional sports teams in the state “may return to training and even competition — if their leagues choose to move in that direction.”
That means the New York Giants and Jets can begin opening their facilities to staff members roughly one week after the NFL allowed teams located in areas given the green light by governing and health officials to open their doors.
The Giants train in East Rutherford, a short distance from MetLife Stadium, while the Jets’ facilities are in Florham Park.
“We are working closely with Governor Murphy’s office, league, and medical staff to establish prudent health and safety measures for our staff/players,” a Jets spokesperson told Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. “We will begin to open our facility using a phased approach at a time that is most practical for our operations.”
“We have been in close contact with Governor Murphy’s staff to comply with the state’s protocols throughout,” the Giants said in a statement. “With today’s announcement by the governor, we are finalizing our plans to reopen the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.”
The Giants plan on getting essential employees back into the facility next week.
“We will do so in a systematic and safe way that adheres to the state’s guidelines and NFL protocols.”
The decision, however, does not mean that coaches and players are on their way back.
In the announcement allowing team facilities to open on May 19, the NFL set strict guidelines on who will be permitted to head back to work.
They are as follows, per NFL.com:
- Teams are not allowed to have more than 50% of their staff in the facility and the number cannot exceed 75 people. That total is for all club locations combined.
- No members of the coaching staff are permitted to return to the facility to “ensure equity among all 32 clubs.” Strength and conditioning coaches may continue working in the facility only if said person “is currently participating in player rehabilitation.”
- No players are allowed in the facility other than those currently undergoing treatment.
- Teams must promptly report any cases of COVID-19 in the facility.
- Teams must promptly report any change in government regulations.
On Sunday, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo gave the OK for professional sports teams to begin training in the state.
New Jersey is the second-most impacted state behind New York when it comes to the coronavirus outbreak. As of Tuesday morning, 155,092 positive cases were reported and 11,147 people have died, per CNN.
This story first appeared on amNY.com