“To play this season, the NFL must accept that 2020 could be an imperfect, wholly unfair season. The sooner we accept that, the more we’ll be able to enjoy the most unique season in league history.” – King on the 2020 NFL season
“I think you have to look at 2020 as an experimental year that is off-kilter. It’s a litmus test in how we adapt.” – A team executive to King
“When you see the schedule come out this week, it’s okay to be excited and have anticipation. But don’t get married to it.” – King on the 2020 schedule
“I don’t think Rodgers should be miffed at LaFleur. I doubt LaFleur pushed for (Jordan) Love. The Green Bay chain of command is crystal clear.” – King on the Aaron Rodgers-Matt LaFleur relationship
ProFootballTalk.com Provides the Latest Offseason News and Updates; Florio & Simms on PFT Live Weekdays at 7 a.m. ET on NBCSN
STAMFORD, Conn. – May 4, 2020 – Peter King discusses the NFL’s upcoming schedule release and the uniqueness of the 2020 season in this week’s edition of Football Morning in America, available now exclusively on NBCSports.com. King also speaks with former Packers linebacker A.J. Hawk about Aaron Rodgers, and analyzes the outcome of recent NFL trades.
This week on NBCSN, Lunch Talk Live with Mike Tirico continues each weekday at Noon ET, followed by The Rich Eisen Show at 1 p.m. ET. King joins The Rich Eisen Show this afternoon. NBC Sports Football Flex, a one-hour show featuring the most topical news and analysis from NBC Sports’ digital football content, begins daily at 11 a.m. ET on NBCSN. For more information on NBCSN’s weekday programming, click here.
Additionally, ProFootballTalk.com continues to provide the latest offseason news, and NFL insider Mike Florio and analyst Chris Simms provide analysis and updates on PFT Live.
The following are highlights from this week’s edition of Football Morning in America:
2020 NFL SEASON
King on the 2020 season and schedule: “To play this season, the NFL must accept that 2020 could be an imperfect, wholly unfair season. The sooner we accept that, the more we’ll be able to enjoy the most unique season in league history…There’s lots to think about. When you see the schedule come out this week, it’s okay to be excited and have anticipation. But don’t get married to it.”
An executive of a major market team to King: “I think you have to look at 2020 as an experimental year that is off-kilter. It’s a litmus test in how we adapt.”
A top team executive to King: “At some point, we’re going to have to start accepting inequalities…Time will tell, but the way it looks now, there’s no way all states are going to be under equal rules by the summer.”
King on teams in different states playing under different rules: “The NFL may have to determine if it’s willing to play games with fans in Tampa Bay, and games with no fans in California, for most of all of the season.”
King on the NFL schedule release: “It’s likely the NFL is making multiple schedules, in the case of a reduction to 14 or 12 or 10 games per team. Even a 16-game schedule could have major changes.”
King on schedule scenarios: “It’s possible the schedule gets pushed back a week or four, and maybe the byes eliminated…It’s also possible the league could choose to start four weeks late and simply kick off the schedule with the Week 5 games, beginning Oct. 8… and take Weeks 1 through 4 and put them on the last four weekends in January.”
King on the Buccaneers: “When the schedule comes out later this week, the one thing current events have done, most likely, is to make Tampa Bay a national team with new quarterback Tom Brady.”
King on the possible impact of in-season coronavirus on players: “I doubt you’d see any players say they were refusing to play. But if a team, for example, gets four or five positive tests of players, coaches or staff close together, would the league shut down that team and cancel its next game or two?”
King on testing: “By August, will there be enough tests so that the NFL doesn’t seem piggish to be using 200,000 that could go to the general public?…And teams will have to be willing, in the case of a positive test, to commit to placing that person in quarantine for two weeks.”
King on potential fans restrictions: “I could see the NFL, if and when fans are allowed to come to games, advising anyone over 70 to not come. I could see alcohol being banned at games for the year. (Meaning, theoretically, fewer trips to crowded rest rooms through crowded concourses by patrons.)”
ON AARON RODGERS
King on Aaron Rodgers’ interview with A.J. Hawk on “The HawkCast” podcast: “It’s very insightful. (Former teammate A.J.) Hawk recorded it three weeks ago…What comes through strongly is the high regard (Aaron) Rodgers has for coach Matt LaFleur and his appreciation for the fateful draft drop in 2005 that landed him in Green Bay…Three weeks later, I asked Hawk what his friend might be thinking now.”
Hawk to King on the Packers selecting QB Jordan Love: “I think Aaron’s relationship with Jordan Love will be great. Aaron will be open with him. I think the frustrating part for him, and for the organization, will be this story will not go away…It probably doesn’t help that [Rodgers and LaFleur] probably won’t be in the same room for a while.”
King on the Rodgers-LaFleur relationship: “I don’t think Rodgers should be miffed at LaFleur. I doubt LaFleur pushed for Love. The Green Bay chain of command is crystal clear. The general manager has draft and free-agent authority. The coach coaches the team.”
King on the Packers: “The best thing for the Packers right now is for LaFleur and Rodgers to sit in the same room soon, or the same virtual room, and lay all cards on the table. They’ve talked. But have they said everything that needs to be said?…All things that will make the Green Bay camp – if there’s going to be one – the most interesting in football to monitor this summer, or fall.”
NFL TRADES & NOTES
King: “Fleshing out some notable trades, including some of the major ones but not the Jalen Ramsey or Laremy Tunsil deals yet because too much uncertainty remains in terms of 2021 draft picks.”
King on the Khalil Mack trade: “(Khalil Mack) is still the best player in this deal. If (Bears first-round pick Cole) Kmet’s a good NFL tight end, the win here will go to Chicago. That’s a big if. (Raiders running back Josh) Jacobs will be Jon Gruden’s feature back for the next three years, most likely.”
King on the DeForest Buckner trade: “Good deal for both teams, if (first-round pick Javon) Kinlaw can be the stout space-eater San Francisco is counting on.”
King on the Stefon Diggs trade: “If (Stefon) Diggs can be a legit WR1 for the Bills in the next two or three years, the trade’s a good one for Buffalo. He may well be, but anything less than top-10 receiver production would be disappointing.”
King on the Rob Gronkowski trade: “Who knows what the battered but rested Gronk will have left after 19 months away from football. It’s a gamble that only has a high price if the Bucs squander one of their two good tight ends in the process of giving the future Hall of Famer his snaps.”
King on the DeAndre Hopkins trade: “The only way this trade isn’t a disaster for Houston is if (David) Johnson approximates his 2016 form. Four years is a lifetime for a back, so this looks like a clear win for Hopkins and the Cardinals.”
King on the Saints: “I think I’d still make the Saints starting QB job Taysom Hill’s to lose, when the 2021 season opens, if (Drew) Brees indeed retires. This gap year for Jameis Winston in New Orleans will be a challenge for him to prove he can switch from the mistake-prone guy he’s been for five years into an efficient player.”
King on Andy Dalton: “I think that is a brilliant signing by the Cowboys, getting Andy Dalton…If (Dak) Prescott boycotts the offseason program in his contract stalemate and Dalton is there every day, who knows? Would Mike McCarthy dare start Dalton when the real games start? I doubt it, but it’s a storyline to follow.”
The following are additional highlights of NBC Sports’ NFL coverage:
- Lunch Talk Live: NBC Sports’ hour-long, daily sports talk show, which is hosted by Mike Tirico, continues each weekday at Noon ET on NBCSN. Today’s featured guests include Colts head coach Frank Reich and former Raiders executive Amy Trask.
- The Rich Eisen Show: Rich Eisen, a four-time Sports Emmy studio host nominee and NFL Network’s first on-air talent, brings his Los Angeles-based The Rich Eisen Show to NBCSN on weekdays at 1 p.m. ET. King will appear on today’s show.
- Click here for more information on Lunch Talk Live, The Rich Eisen Show, and NBC Sports Football Flex.
- PFT Live: Mike Florio and Chris Simms continue to discuss offseason and post-Draft storylines.
A new “Football Morning in America” posts every Monday morning exclusively on NBCSports.com through the NFL season. It was announced in May 2019 that King signed an exclusive agreement with NBC Sports Group that included writing a weekly Monday morning NFL column for NBCSports.com; making regular appearances on NBCSN’s and NBC Sports Radio’s PFT Live with Mike Florio; and continuing to contribute to Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports.