Troy Vincent: All Options Being Considered Regarding NFL Playoff Bubble

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistAugust 19, 2020

FILE - In this May 22, 2019, file photo, Troy Vincent, NFL executive vice president of football operations, speaks to the media during the owners meetings in Key Biscayne, Fla. Wisely, the NFL has taken baby steps toward some sort of normalcy. It has moved slowly in allowing a small number of team personnel to return to club facilities. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)
Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

The NFL could follow the lead set by the NBA and NHL by using a single location for the 2020 postseason.

Troy Vincent, the league's executive vice president of football operations, told reporters Wednesday the NFL has to be "flexible" and that "all things are on the table" when asked about the possibility of using a bubble for the postseason.

The NBA and NHL have successfully resumed their seasons by shifting to isolated locations.

As of Wednesday, the NBA has had five consecutive weeks without any positive COVID-19 tests at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. The NHL reported Monday its third straight week with zero positive tests in its hub cities of Toronto and Edmonton, Alberta.

Last month, following a COVID-19 outbreak within the Miami Marlins, NFL chief medical officer Dr. Allen Sills told ESPN's Kevin Seifert the league had plans for a "virtual football bubble":

"We've said all along that we expected there would be positive cases among players and personnel. And there may be a number on each team. As long as this virus is endemic in society, we're going to continue to see new cases.

"What we think is important is that we have protocols in place that can identify those cases as quickly as possible, and make sure that once we identify them, we take the right action, which is to isolate the individual away from the team, get them the appropriate treatment and then do the contact tracing."

One potential benefit of a postseason bubble for the NFL would be lowering the risk that any player has to sit out a playoff game because of a positive test.

This year's postseason, which will be the first with an expanded 14-team field, is scheduled to begin Jan. 9. Super Bowl LV is set for Feb. 7 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.