ATLANTA (AP) — With an eye toward getting back on the field, the NFL is working on a helmet face guard that might provide the same protection as a surgical mask.
Atlanta Falcons president Rich McKay says the issue came up about a month ago during a conference call with the league’s competition committee.
Many players already wear visors to protect their eyes. McKay says the new mask would cover even more of the face.
The medical director of the NFL Players Association, Tom Mayer, tells ESPN's Adam Schefter that league engineers and sports equipment company Oakley are already testing prototypes of the modified mask that might contain surgical or N95 material.
Mayer said there will likely be a recommendation to use the mask when the NFL begins its preseason schedule in August.
If the masks are comfortable and they’re safe, McKay said he expects them to quickly gain acceptance.