On Monday, news broke that multiple Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans players — including Ezekiel Elliott — tested positive for COVID-19. It didn’t take long for some NFL head coaches to respond with some skepticism and fear about how the season might go.
A while after the shocking news of the positive coronavirus tests broke, tenured NFL insider Ed Werder shared a sobering tweet.
In it, he shared that one NFL head coach see the positive tests as “scary,” that one thinks the season should be delayed, and that another NFL head coach “questioned wisdom of playing during a pandemic.”
One NFL head coach described as “scary” that #Cowboys and #Texans players – including Ezekiel Elliott – tested positive for Coronavirus. Another HC told me league needs to delay start of the season. A third coach questioned wisdom of playing during a pandemic.— Ed Werder (@WerderEdESPN) June 15, 2020
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard NFL coaches expressing skepticism about the NFL being played amid the coronavirus pandemic.
However, in light of recent trends, it is notable.
Colleges around the nation are seeing student-athletes return to campus infected with COVID-19. Now, it’s starting to happen in the NFL as well. Additionally, positive cases are starting to spike in 20 of the 50 states in America right now.
The NFL has continued to plan for business as usual in 2020. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell recently said the regular season will start on time, and training camps are set to begin next month around the league.
There are stringent protocols being developed for when players arrive back at team facilities. They haven’t been allowed since March. When they do return, things will be much different — especially in the locker room.
Even with all these protocols in place, the NFL is not going to avoid positive tests during the season. At this point, the big question is: How many positive tests is too many?
The only thing we know for sure is that things will most certainly not be normal this fall.