Oct
25
2020

The Fuel Tank: Has The NFL Botched Their Covid-19 Plan?

Hello, football fans and welcome to the Fuel Tank! In this exciting column, we will be breaking down one of the hottest NFL debate topics and then I will be giving my viewpoint on the topic while breaking down why the opposition is false. Please don’t bash anyone or post any hateful comments as everyone has a right to their own opinion! With that said, let’s jump right into today’s story.

COVID-19, the virus that has restricted our daily lives for the past six to seven months; quarantine, all schools moving to online, job losses, and many other depressing things have occurred due to this. In the sports world, COVID hasn’t allowed fans to enter the stadium, (in a sense) banned travel for away games, and multiple other occurrences. Unlike the NBA (who did a fantastic job preventing the spread of the virus), the NFL has utterly botched their protocols and preventing the spread of the virus, and here’s why:

1. Infections after infections

In more recent Covid news, the Raiders had a massive overload of players that entered the COVID-19/reserve list as they had to put their entire starting offensive on it when they found out that tackle Trent Brown had contracted the virus. Also, corner Davon Arnette contracted the virus earlier in the week, and safety Jonathan Abram had to isolate due to being in close contact with him. They will all be out for Sunday’s game against the Buccaneers.

Let’s not forget about one team that started an outbreak even after being told to stop practicing, but still did it: the Tennessee Titans. A few weeks ago, 16 members of the Titans were put on the COVID-19 list and due to this, they had to move the game they were supposed to play (versus the Steelers) to this week. Even after, in a sense, we’re told to isolate from each other due to this, they still went out held a secret practice with the whole team. Let’s just say no one was happy to hear that: especially the NFL itself.

These two prime examples and many smaller instances have shown that the NFL failed to keep players safe. This isn’t the only reason why though:

2. Things they should’ve banned

So, you ban jersey swaps? That’s good and one way to slightly minimize the spread. but why haven’t you banned post-game interactions? Did that slip your mind because a virus that’s easily spread when you’re close to someone (that’s Science 101); and to add insult to injury, this virus does spread like wildfire.

Another question: with all of these infections and these couple outbreaks, why haven’t you tried or even thought about creating a bubble? The NBA was able to it effectively and even though the NFL team has more than 3x the number of teammates and staff than NBA teams, you could still think of something if this continues to become a problem.

As you can see, the NFL clearly didn’t think this as thoroughly as they should’ve. While they are using great technology to track everyone, who they’re near, etc., that alone (and the no fans plus the masks) apparently wasn’t enough.

3. Rescheduling games

Have you heard of any other league that is playing right reschedule their games yet due to infections? The answer is no as the NFL is the only league to do so. As of October 15th, 12 games have been rescheduled, which is terrible once you think more about it. Fans are angered since it shows that the NFL failed to keep players and staff safe. Also, it shows that they have no control over the said virus as the rescheduling is happening too often.

The NBA and the NHL, thanks to their bubble, never had to worry about rescheduling games because of it. The NWSL, as I know of, hasn’t any problems with the virus as they put in a bubble for their Challenge Cup tourney and the Fall Series. Hats off to these three leagues.; maybe the NFL should follow in their footsteps.

Addressing the other side

Football is still playing, so isn’t botched.

It is, but how many times are games going to be rescheduled? How many times will we see a in the headlines that another player has been infected along with players/team member isolating themselves away from everyone else due to being near the infected player? It’s not flowing smoothly and it’s a matter of time before it can become worse than it actually. They have to settle more precautions sooner than later.

Players are up close to others all the time; it was bound to happen

Players in any league are up close and personal to each other all the time as well, yet other leagues haven’t had the issues the NFL is facing. Before you say it’s because football is a contact sport, so is hockey and basketball (to an extent) and they barely faced problems with players contracting the virus or teams having outbreaks within their facility. It’s just the fact that the NFL mismanaged this.

That’s all for why I believe the NFL has mismanaged/botched their COVID-19 plan. What are your thoughts on this? Leave a comment down below to join the discussion.

Thanks for reading and have a spectacular day!