NFL closes locker rooms to all media except team-affiliated media

The NFL sent a memo to all teams Tuesday informing them that it will limit locker room access to 50 fully vaccinated team staffers. The staffers include coaches, athletic training staff, equipment staff, G.M., team security, club public relations, team-affiliated media and locker room staff.

The league permitted 40 fully vaccinated team staffers last year.

The locker room will remain closed to all media not affiliated with the team, including broadcast partners, NFL Films, NFL Media and flagship radio.

A maximum of three people from a team’s public relations department/team-affiliated media are allowed in the locker room postgame while players are present.

Non-team-affiliated media has not been inside NFL locker rooms since the 2019 season. Instead, teams have utilized interview rooms/areas and video calls for coach and player interviews since the pandemic began.

The 2021 media access policy, though, encourages teams to accommodate requests from non-team-affiliated media for one-on-one interviews outside the locker room during the week and postgame. It remains to be seen how well it’s going to work, with some teams surely eager to use the exclusive locker room access to their benefit.