1. Good for Adam Schefter.
The ESPN reporter is clearly exasperated by the NFL acting as if nothing crazy is happening in the country and proceeding with everything as if it is business as usual.
During an appearance on Scott Van Pelt's SportsCenter on Tuesday night, Schefter did something he rarely, if ever, does—take the NFL to task. Specifically for going forward with the draft on April 23.
"We all want to see the days where we have the distraction of football," Schefter said. "OTAs? That's not happening. The offseason program? That's not happening. The draft is happening only through the sheer force and determination and lack of foresight from the NFL. They are determined to put this on while there is carnage in the streets."
Now, before the coronavirus truthers out there ("It's just the flu," "The numbers aren't real," etc.) send me a tweet or email about Schefter's use of hyperbole or inciting fear, remember that he is based in the Northeast. And while people may not be dying in the streets yet, hospitals in New York are a mess. The coronavirus numbers for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are staggering. The context of Schefter's comments are clear to anyone who is paying attention to what's happening.
Schefter also deserves credit for biting the hand that feeds him. The NFL and ESPN are partners, and the NFL will NOT be happy with Schefter's comments.
Last week, Schefter was advocating for the draft to be held over seven straight nights—one round per night. Clearly, he had a change of heart after hearing the latest information from experts about what's to come in the next few months, and that's commendable.
The league seems almost defiant about not having its plans altered by a pandemic. It's actually wild to see because what's going on in this country right now isn't just about people getting sick and dying. There are severe economic ramifications.
Here's what NFL executive VP and general counsel Jeff Pash said Tuesday, via Sports Business Journal, about the NFL going forward with the season on time: "What the doctors are looking at are models that address the effectiveness of different kinds of interventions, on how the curve has trended down and tailed off in other countries, and what they believe will be the result based on the modeling that’s done in this country.”
OK, fine. Let's say social distancing works and the NFL season starts on time. Does Goodell actually think 80,000 people are going to be comfortable cramming themselves into a stadium? Are people out of work going to spend money on NFL tickets? Are people struggling to pay bills going to pay $8 for a bottle of Poland Spring water at an NFL game or $30 to park?
In Goodell's mind, yes.
Good luck with that.
2. If you are looking for a light, fun hour to kill, check out a brand new episode of the SI Media Podcast with Good Morning Football's Kyle Brandt. We tried to keep things light for everyone, so while we discussed how we feel about the NFL playing games in empty stadiums and Tom Brady leaving the Patriots, we also talked about our shaving and dressing routines while being home, Tiger King, Kyle starting to watch The Office, the difference between those who love Larry David and those who are made uncomfortable by him, ESPN's upcoming Michael Jordan documentary, Carmen Electra and much more.
3. Here's a Q&A I did recently with WWE superstar Seth Rollins on a variety of topics. While we covered things such as how difficult it is for Rollins to perform in front of empty arenas and the WWE's decision to continue airing live shows, we also touched on what Rollins is watching these days and his relationship with Becky Lynch, which is going great based on this quote.
4. This video of Kevin Love perfectly sums up what quarantine life is like at this stage.
5. Come on, Kirby. If you can handle the cesspool that is college sports, you can handle Tiger King.
6. Larry David would like to address "the idiots out there" who won't stay home.
7. One of the best tweets I've seen in a while.
8. RANDOM YOUTUBE VIDEO OF THE DAY: It's hard to say anything about The Sopranos is underrated, but I've always felt the Tony-Junior scenes don't get the credit they deserve. Especially when you mix in Bobby.
9. SPORTS HIGHLIGHT OF THE DAY: Pistons-Sixers wild melee, 1990.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on iTunes, Spotify or Stitcher. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.