Two games shaved off Packers' preseason as NFL shortens exhibition schedule
GREEN BAY - Schedule-wise, the National Football League had managed to remain largely unaffected by the coronavirus pandemic. Spring camps and organized team activities were canceled and held virtually, but the league had pressed on regarding the opening of training camp as scheduled July 28 and releasing a full slate of preseason and regular-season games.
That now has changed, a league source confirmed to PackersNews on Wednesday.
The NFL will shave two preseason games off its schedule, as first reported by ProFootballTalk.com. ESPN followed up with specifics that the first and fourth games will be canceled to allow a greater run-up of practice time for players to get in shape to play.
The Packers were scheduled to host the Arizona Cardinals on Aug. 15 in the exhibition opener and head to Kansas City to play the preseason finale Sept. 3. Those games have been taken off the schedule, PackersNews confirmed.
ESPN reported that nearly all teams will report to training camp July 28 to begin a 23-day acclimation period, with preseason Week 1 games being played from Aug. 20-24 and preseason Week 2 games set for Aug. 27-31.
The Packers now are scheduled to host the Cleveland Browns in their preseason opener Aug. 22 and visit the New York Giants on Aug. 29, but that could change.
The Packers have not made any official announcement on the reduction of the preseason schedule, though they said Wednesday they will not house players at St. Norbert College during training camp in accordance with NFL safety guidelines.