A week after announcing that the league’s medical staff would begin a review of how players were recovering following a procedure that left the team with a host of issues, the NFL is delaying the schedule for the start on Sunday of the first preseason game.
The league, in a statement Friday, said that it is making this decision based on a review it has conducted of the care that has been provided to the team and on its understanding of the potential impact of the delay on the health and well-being of players and the community.
The league is aware that a delay in the start would result in a greater number of potential concussions among players, but has decided to defer that decision until it can fully evaluate the risks and benefits of the additional steps it has taken.
The NFL had initially scheduled the start for Sept. 1, a day before the start date for the regular season.
The delay will be enforced for the second consecutive week.
The players’ association, which filed the suit challenging the NFL’s policy, was pleased with the league action.
The NFL Players Association said in a press release Friday that the “league will take all necessary measures to ensure the safety of all players and to ensure that every player will receive the medical care that is required.”
“This is a critical time for all players to recover from concussions,” said Jeff Pash, the union’s executive director.
“Our hope is that the NFL will act quickly to ensure a safe, timely and successful preseason for all teams.
We look forward to hearing the NFLPA’s recommendations as we wait for further information.”