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2014 Training Camps Start Opening On Wednesday

By the end of business on Wednesday, three NFL teams will have players in training camp.

Rookies for Baltimore, Buffalo and San Francisco will be in camp, the first wave of the 32 teams with rookies and veterans reporting for the start of the 2014 season. The last group to report will be the Detroit veterans that will show up on July 27th.

But there’s one team where the players may show up early – that’s the New Orleans Saints. Head coach Sean Payton is taking his club to the mountains of West Virginia for the first weeks of training. It will all go down at The Greenbrier Hotel (pictured above) in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. The Saints veterans may show up early because the resort has five golf courses and Tom Watson is the golf professional emeritus. There’s so much more with 55 different activities including off-road driving, horse riding, falconry, a gun club, archery, paint ball, ice skating, fly fishing, a casino, a spa, shopping and 14 restaurants and bars. All of that is on 10,000 acres. It is posh.

And, it’s almost 900 miles away from the Big Easy and about 20 degrees cooler on a daily basis, with much lower humidity. That was the attraction for Payton in helping his players rebound each day from practice.

“Every year we evaluate all areas of our operations and look for ways to improve,” Payton said. “We all understand the importance of training camp – that’s to get the team ready for the regular season. As far as the time we will spend at The Greenbrier, it offers a tremendous opportunity to our team in a more moderate summer climate.”

The Chiefs rookies will not report to first-class resort. They’ll start arriving at Missouri Western State College on Sunday afternoon and have their first practice on Monday. The three rookie practices next week are closed to the public. The veterans report on Wednesday with the first public practice on Thursday.

Andy Reid and his campers are one of 13 NFL teams that do not hold training camp at their regular season facility. More and more teams have stopped transporting players to a remote setting where they stay in a dormitory or hotel.

The NFL team that will make the longest trip to training camp are the Dallas Cowboys. Owner Jerry Jones is taking them back to Oxnard, California. That’s a one-way trip of 1,500 miles. They will train on fields owned by the city of Oxnard.

Every summer, the Raiders move 50 miles north to the Napa Valley Marriott, where the fields are in perfect condition and during time off, the players can visit the wineries.

The Saints and Raiders are unusual; currently and certainly in the past NFL teams have not looked for resort facilities if they were going away from home. They are more interested in dorms and cafeterias, than tee times and spa treatments.

Joining the Cowboys, Saints, Raiders and Chiefs as training camp travelers are the N.Y. Jets (200 miles), Washington (116), Minnesota (100), Chicago (93), Buffalo (87), Carolina (71), Indianapolis (56), Pittsburgh (42) and Green Bay (5).

AFC

Team

Site

Location

Rookies

Vets

Distance

Baltimore

Under Armour Performance Center

Owings Mills, MD

7/16

7/23

Buffalo

St. John Fisher College

Pittsford, NY

7/16

7/19

87 miles

Cincinnati

Paul Brown Stadium

Cincinnati, OH

7/21

7/23

Cleveland        

Cleveland Browns Training Facility

Berea, OH

7/23

7/25

Denver

Bowlen Memorial Broncos Centre

Englewood, CO

7/23

7/23

Houston

Houston Methodist Training Center

Houston, TX

7/21

7/25

Indianapolis

Anderson University

Anderson, IN

7/23

7/23

56 miles

Jacksonville

Florida Wellness Practice Fields

Jacksonville, FL

7/21

7/24

Kansas City

Missouri Western State University

St. Joseph, MO

7/20

7/23

61 miles

Miami

Doctors Hospital Training Facility

Davie, FL

7/24

7/24

New England

Gillette Stadium

Foxboro, MA

7/20

7/23

N.Y. Jets

SUNY Cortland

Cortland, NY

7/22

7/23

200 miles

Oakland

Napa Valley Marriott

Napa, CA

7/24

7/24

50 miles

Pittsburgh

Saint Vincent College

Latrobe, PA

7/25

7/25

42 miles

San Diego

Chargers Park

San Diego, CA

7/23

7/23

Tennessee

Saint Thomas Sports Park

Nashville, TN

7/25

7/25

NFC

Team

Site

Location

Rookies

Vets

Distance

Arizona

University of Phoenix Stadium

Glendale, AZ

7/22

7/25

Atlanta

Atlanta Falcons Facility

Flowery Branch, GA

7/22

7/24

Carolina

Wofford College

Spartanburg, SC

7/24

7/24

71 miles

Chicago

Olivet Nazarene University

Bourbonnais, IL

7/24

7/24

93 miles

Dallas

City of Oxnard Fields

Oxnard, CA

7/23

7/23

1,500 miles

Detroit

Detroit Lions Training Facility

Allen Park, MI

7/22

7/27

Green Bay

St. Norbert College

Green Bay, WI

7/25

7/25

5 miles

Minnesota

Minnesota State-Mankato

Mankato, MN

7/24

7/24

100 miles

New Orleans

The Greenbrier

White Springs, WV

7/20

7/24

885 miles

N.Y. Giants

Quest Diagnostics Center

East Rutherford, NJ

7/21

7/21

Philadelphia

NovaCare Complex

Philadelphia, PA

7/25

7/25

St. Louis

Rams Park Training Center

Earth City, MO

7/22

7/24

San Francisco

SAP Performance Facility

Santa Clara, CA

7/16

7/23

Seattle

Mason Athletic Center

Renton, WA

7/24

7/24

Tampa Bay

One Buccaneer Place

Tampa, FL

7/21

7/24

Washington

Bon Secours Training Center

Richmond, VA

7/23

7/23

116 miles


6 Responses to “2014 Training Camps Start Opening On Wednesday”

  • July 16, 2014  - Justin D says:

    Man, I miss the trek to River Falls. Nice, cool weather, nice golf and a side trip to Mankato. Hard to beat.

    Now we have the steam oven of St Joe. All the allure of working in a ships boiler room in the I.O.


  • July 16, 2014  - el cid says:

    This one year, Justin, not sure I agree. This year the weather is great, they play golf in St. Joe. Tiffany Greens is a bit of drive but great course. Been to Mankato, not impressed and to suggest Mankato is special or River Falls, well not sure what your agenda is but what I see does not compare to what you suggest.

    AND I live in Atchison, KS. I can sleep in my own bed every nite and still see ever practice open to the public.


  • July 16, 2014  - BigJimInWisconsin says:

    I sure miss the 4-1/2 hour drive to River Falls from the Milwaukee area. Now, it’s about 8-1/2 hours.

    I know; where’s my dedication? …

    Go CHIEFS!


  • July 16, 2014  - R W says:

    Question for a future “Ask Bob” episode: Is there any empirical research to suggest that training in a cooler climate is more beneficial than a hotbox like St Joe?


  • July 16, 2014  - Johnfromwichita says:

    My guess is nothing spells weight loss better than heat.

    Plus, in the teeth of numbing coldness in December what could be warmer than the memory of St. Joe in August?

    Oh, BigJim, stop it. You’re making me look like a wimp when I bitch and moan about our three hour drive to KC.


  • July 17, 2014  - BigJimInWisconsin says:

    With all due respect John, I wish I was just a 3 hour drive from cheering our beloved Chiefs. True that it’s only a one hour flight from Milwaukee, but I don’t make that kind of money.

    You should be nominated for sainthood for doing that drive during the 2012 season!

    Go CHIEFS!


  • July 17, 2014  - Johnfromwichita says:

    BigJim, afraid Sainthood ain’t going to happen. Saints don’t drink beer at 8:30. Grill cow parts on charcoal. Go ballistics in screaming against other team and stupid refs.

    However, my wife might be up for that 2012 award. She opened that beer, cooked the dead cow parts, and nudged me hard if I wasn’t screaming loud enough.

    Plus she always drives me home.

    Long ago I took a beautiful, long hair, slim, huge eyes, sultry mouth girl and turned her into a military spouse. Sorry, I did not know.

    A military active duty person has a calling: keep our country safe.

    A military spouse has a purpose: keep my family together.

    Hell has no fury like a military wife.

    The only people that can understand that are her sons and grandkids. And, most days, me.




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