Despite American pro and collegiate sports being shut down due to COVID-19, NFL free agency is still in line to begin as scheduled this week. As of now, at least.
The legal tampering period is supposed to begin tomorrow. Official free agency, and the new league year will get going on Wednesday. However, things could be pushed back, as New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton alluded to yesterday.
“Most immediately, the start of our league year, which is due to be this Wednesday, (when) free agency begins, that’s going to be, I think, pushed back,” Payton told NBC Sports’ Britney Eurton at Oaklawn Park Saturday. “Because there’s a lot that goes into that, there’s a lot of visits players take.”
Almost immediately, Payton’s comments raised eyebrows, as many assumed the longtime coach was using inside info to reveal that free agency would be delayed. However, that’s not the case.
Speaking with ESPN’s Dianna Russini, Payton clarified that he’s not sure about free agency getting pushed back but “thinks it will be delayed.”
I asked Sean Payton about these comments. He says “he thinks, he is not sure, but thinks it will be delayed.”
Nothing formal. https://t.co/CDF2u71ABs
— Dianna (@diannaESPN) March 15, 2020
It would not surprise us if free agency and the league year are shelved for a bit, given the heightened sense of caution every institution in America is supposed to be operating with thanks to coronavirus.
The NFL has to make an announcement about it soon though one would think.