For the first time this season, the NFL must postpone a regular-season matchup due to positive COVID-19 tests.
It was only a matter of time before an NFL game succumbed to the powerful force that is the coronavirus pandemic.
According to Dianna Russini of ESPN, the league is postponing Sunday’s Week 4 matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Tennessee Titans. This comes after three new Titans players along with five personnel tested positive for COVID-19 during Monday’s round of testing. The Titans facility was subsequently shut down until Saturday of this week.
Sunday’s game between the Steelers and Titans is being postponed per multiple sources. They are considering all options to reschedule, Monday night as one of them. This will all be based on test results.
— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) September 30, 2020
The Minnesota Vikings are additionally included in this situation, given the fact that the Titans faced them in a Week 3 matchup last Sunday. Nonetheless, each of the Vikings’ tests from both Monday and Tuesday came back negative. The Titans discovered just one more positive test from Tuesday’s round, per ESPN’s Dan Graziano.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the pending game will end up occurring on either Monday or Tuesday of next week. It’s not a significant postponement, but one that affects either team’s schedule for the following week. This alteration gives both the Titans and Steelers less time to prepare for their respective Week 5 opponents than what was originally granted.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 30, 2020
Of course, the league hopes this is the sole game postponement that occurs, but it’s certainly too early to tell if that’ll be the case. For the 2020 season to work, the players, coaches, front office staff, and personnel for each team need to follow the strict protocols, especially when it comes to coaches wearing masks on the sideline (which there have been issues with thus far).