By Lisa Johnson //@LJ1303
As word came down about the possibility of yet another NFL game being rescheduled, NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, sent all 32 teams the league’s coronavirus safety protocols making clear there will be penalties for violations.
This memo came after a league-wide conference call Monday, stating that every team needs to follow proper protocol for the health and safety of all players, staff, and coaches.
One team in particular now seems to have violated these protocols. The NFL and the NFLPA have launched an investigation as to whether or not the Tennessee Titans held unauthorized player work-outs. Due to an apparent outbreak among the team, the Titans’ facilities were closed. This goes against the NFL league protocols.
The game in question is this Sunday’s match-up against the red hot Buffalo Bills. The AFC East-leading Bills are scheduled to play the Titans at Nissan Stadium in Tennessee. That game is now very much in doubt due to 2 more Titan players have tested positive for COVID-19. This comes after last week’s Titans- Steelers game was rescheduled due to the Titans outbreak.
Many other teams and coaches are being fined for not following proper league protocols, so we can assume there would be consequences for the Titans if found to be in violation of the rules.
Many fans and former players weighed in on the possible punishment if deemed these protocols were broken. Some called for the Titans to forfeit the game and be handed a loss, while others thought a fine or possible loss of a draft pick would suffice. Former Carolina Panthers wide receiver Torrey Smith thinks they should have to forfeit this week.
The Titans should have to take a loss and play next week because of their irresponsible actions.
— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) October 8, 2020
I agree with him. If the Tennessee Titans knowingly violated the league’s Covid-19 policy, which reads “Protocol violations that result in virus spread requiring adjustments to the schedule or otherwise impacting other teams will result in additional financial and competitive discipline, including the adjustment or loss of draft choices or even the forfeit of a game,” then they should be held accountable
With that being said, should they be handed a loss?
On the other hand, I am not thrilled about handing the Buffalo Bills a win. I’d like the league in this case to determine playoffs by a winning percentage instead of record.
Regardless, the NFL needs to send a message. This penalty needs to be stern enough for other teams to take notice.
Chat with Lisa on Twitter @LJ1303