Coronavirus makes its way around the National Football League


Image Courtesy of The Ringer

Ryan Kelsey, Staff Writer

A little more than a month removed from the start of the 2020 NFL season, the Coronavirus has spread throughout the league. The league had implemented several safety protocols to decrease the likelihood of COVID-19 spreading amongst teams, including eliminating pre-season games, requiring regular COVID tests, and limiting the amount of fans who can attend games. However, despite the protocols that the league enforced, COVID-19 has made its way around the league impacting numerous teams.

The Tennessee Titans are one NFL team that has been hit the hardest with positive COVID-19 tests. Since September 24, there have been 13 Titans players who have tested positive, along with 11 staff members. As a result of all of the positive COVID tests, the Titans week four game against the Pittsburgh Steelers was rescheduled for week seven, and their week five matchup against the Buffalo Bills which was scheduled for Sunday got pushed to Tuesday.

The New England Patriots have also seen several of their key players be put on the reserve/COVID-19 list, including 2015 NFL MVP quarterback, Cam Newton. Cam Newton, who is in his

first season playing for the Patriots, had played just three games (winning two and losing one), and had thrown for over 700 passing yards prior to being put on the reserve/COVID-19 list on October 2.

There have been three total confirmed positive COVID-19 cases on the Patriots including Cam Newton, and consequently, the league decided to cancel the Patriots practices in person and had them have remote meetings only. Likewise, the Patriots game where they were supposed to host the Denver Broncos got moved from their original scheduled time on Sunday, to then Monday evening, and then scratched all together from week five and moved to October 18th instead.

The NFL and the decision to postpone various week four and five matchups not only impacts the direct teams who were supposed to play, but also numerous teams across the league like the New York Jets, Jacksonville Jaguars, and the Los Angeles Chargers.

Despite the fact that the coronavirus is having a domino effect on teams across the league, the NFL regular season is still scheduled to finish on time.