As more and more NFL players are being placed on the COVID/reserve list, the league has had no choice but to postpone three of them. The NFL decided that the Cleveland Browns – Las Vegas Raiders game that was scheduled for Saturday, will now take place on Monday.
The duels between the Washington Football Team – Philadelphia Eagles and Seattle Seahawks – Los Angeles Rams have also been postponed and will now be played on Tuesday. This is the first time the NFL has decided to move back games this season, bringing back memories of 2020 when NFL games were postponed and played every day of the week.
Protecting the Health and Safety of the NFL Community
The NFL made the decision to reschedule these three games based on the medical advice it was given and after it discussed the issue with the NFLPA (the Players Association). The league decided to take the step because the new variant of the virus was “highly transmissible” and because the number of new cases in the NFL was increasing every day.
In a news release, the league said that they would continue to talk to medical experts and make decisions that would “ensure the health and safety” of players, staff, and the entire NFL community.
However, the NFL’s decision to postpone the three games didn’t go down well with the Seahawks, Raiders, and Eagles. These teams have relatively low numbers of infected players, so they were hoping that the games would go ahead as planned.
24 Players on the COVID List in Cleveland
That wasn’t the case in Cleveland, though, where the Browns had to deal with a major COVID-19 outbreak in their camp. First, they found that receiver Jarvis Landry and most of the players in their offensive line would have to go on the COVID/reserve list.
They later learned that quarterback Baker Mayfield was also unavailable and that coach Kevin Stefanski joined the reserve list on Wednesday.
The next day, Case Keenum, the Browns’ backup quarterback, was also placed on the list. On Friday, Jadeveon Clowney, the Brown’s edge defender, also became unavailable for selection. By then, the Cleveland Browns had 24 players on the COVID list.
First Games to Be Postponed This Season – Will More Follow?
Even though the number of new COVID-19 infections in the NFL was constantly on the rise recently, many were surprised when the league announced that the Browns game would be postponed.
It was always considered that pushing a game back would not cause a lot of problems. However, the NFL remained quiet on it until Friday, which made many people believe that the league didn’t want to start rescheduling games once again after last season.
Reports claimed that after the league had discussions with the NFLPA on Friday, though, it was decided that there was no other option but to push the Browns game back.
The situation in the Rams and Washington camps was also bleak, so it was inevitable that their games would be postponed too. The two teams had more than 20 players on the COVID list as well.
The predicament the three teams were in reminded people of 2020 when every day there was news about new players going on the reserve list and many games being moved. Last season was also the first time in NFL history that there were games taking place every day of the week.
So, does rescheduling these three games mean that the NFL will now once again start pushing back games? We will find out soon enough.