While the CFL return-to-play protocol has yet to be approved publicly by their government, we do get a better understanding of what it could look like. TSN insider Farhan Lalji reported that the league is going to be harsher on restrictions.
“When you leave the practice facility, you’re expected to go home. When you leave the game stadiums, you’re expected to go home. Inside the facility, there’s going to be masks being worn. There’s going to be distancing.”
“It really is going to be very different and there are some players that are concerned about it, because if you come from a Southern state where there’s been minimal restrictions at the best of times, now you come up here and you’re basically housebound. That’s going to be tough for some.”
Alongside with Lalji, fellow TSN insider Dave Naylor also added:
“Even though there may be certain provinces that are wide open and others that are still having restrictions, there’s going to be no variance in the CFL policy depending on where your team is, part of that has to do with competitive balance. The league doesn’t want to have one team that’s able to gather all their players together in one spot, while another team has to meet in separate rooms, socially distanced and all those kinds of things.”
There are no exceptions on this policy, but Lalji reports that could change depending on the societal response
Despite no confirmation yet on the League’s planned August 5th start, the CFL is planning to allow a ‘significant’ number of fans in attendance. Unfortunately a wrench in their plan is the lack of rolling out vaccines to players, as several players are still unvaccinated.
With the XFL/CFL merger discussions still happening, along with the uncertainty of a solid kick off date, this CFL season is looking to be a unique one. It will try to make up for lost viewership after cancelling the previous season.