Lewan's Plan For a Safe -- And Full -- NFL Season
Tennessee Titans tackle Taylor Lewan believes that if the UFC can operate during a pandemic, the NFL, with even more money and resources, should be able to do the same.
Lewan expressed his thoughts in a series of tweets Saturday, days after the NFL and the NFLPA sent a memo outlining game-day protocols and an infectious disease contingency plan for training camp.
In Lewan’s mind, the NFL should operate in as much of a bubble as possible.
Most notable from the NFL/NFLPA outline, players will be forbidden from postgame interactions with each other. The popular post game of tradition of jersey swapping will go by the wayside in 2020.
In addition, no one with a body temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher will be allowed entry to stadiums on game days, and players and coaches will be strongly encouraged to wear face coverings on sidelines. Other individuals in the bench area (officials, chain crews, ball crews, medical staff) will be required to wear a mask. Social distancing (six feet apart) and no sharing of personal items will be mandated.
The league will require teams to submit their lists of individuals with field access three days before their first preseason game. Those individuals (stadium operations, field crews, league/club game day assistants, club staff, network and other on-field media) also will be required to wear face coverings at all times and must remain outside of a dotted line, which will be between the 30 yard lines and more than 10 feet behind the bench area. These individuals are required to fill out a health screening before arriving at stadiums. If a screening suggests that he or she may be infected with COVID-19, they will not be permitted entry.
Lewan is one of several NFL players to voice opinions on how to conduct a full, safe season during an ongoing pandemic, which has only gotten worse, as training camp quickly approaches (the Titans are scheduled to begin in late July).
The NFL has yet to release its entire comprehensive plan, but it presumably will be circulating through social media sooner rather than later.
NFL players will have much more of which to be mindful on and off the field this season. There also will be more risks and sacrifices involved. Lewan admits that six months of intense COVID-19 mitigation will be challenging. He, however, feels as if the fans deserve it.
“We sacrifice our body’s [sic] every year. But we can do more this year by giving people the game. This isn’t about politics it’s about doing what’s right,” he tweeted.