NFL players are now at risk of being fined, losing some contract agreements, and being docked finances if they decide to take part in a church service considered too crowded, according to Pro Football Talk.
As the 2020 season approaches, the new church rule is a number of restrictions agreed upon between the players union and the league.
Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio wrote that "the deal specifically prohibits players from engaging in certain behaviors this season. Players cannot attend indoor night clubs, indoor bars (except to pickup food), indoor house parties (with 15 or more people), indoor concerts, professional sporting events, or indoor church services that allow attendance above 25 percent of capacity."
Florio added that "players can be fined for violating these rules. Moreover, if they test positive after engaging in prohibited activities, they will not be paid for the games they miss. Also, future guarantees in their contracts would be voided."
The NFL's decision to move forward with these restrictions is part of an effort to avoid a major disturbance throughout the season, such as has happened with the Major League Baseball team, the Miami Marlins, where The Blaze reported that "half the players and several coaches ... tested positive for COVID-19."
Pro Football Talk also reported that "it will be interesting to see how teams enforce the rules," adding that "some may decide to use security officials to monitor local establishments or to track the behavior of players," concluding that "others may rely on contacts within the community to contact the team if/when violations are witnessed."