Following social media can reward you with a variety of opinions. However, it will also subject you to the abject nonsense that permeates a hashtag and fanbase. For the Las Vegas Raiders and Tennessee Titans, occasionally, those fanbases will display less than objective behavior. Granted, we all understand that fan is short for fandom. Yet, there are certain things that should not fall under debate: Common sense during a pandemic.
I don’t care what side of the political aisle you reside on. This article and the content included deal with science, protocol, and the application of common sense. In all honesty, players and management in both organizations displayed a glaring lack of it, and now one may pay a price.
See, What Had Happened Was
Earlier this month, fifteen Titan players, including Ryan Tannehill held an off-site practice. To that amazement of many, photographic evidence. More amazing, the Titans escaped major punishment. The NFL conducted an investigation with the hapless NFLPA in tow. Tennessee avoided harsh consequences, seemingly skating away with only the furrowed brow of disdain from the league. By all accounts, the league needed to send a message. Now, if you have a substance abuse problem, Park Avenue will land harshly upon your career. Instead of being rehabilitative, they choose punitive measures.
When Jon Gruden assumed the mantle of responsibility, he promised to hold individuals accountable? Yet, after wearing his mask incorrectly, the league fined him 100 thousand and the team a quarter-million dollars. Wearing a mask over a nose is something a four-year-old can reasonably accomplish. My son, does it, every day for school. That’s when schools were open before people decided to ignore common sense. Back to Gruden, the face of the franchise, the 100 million dollar man, chose to not wear a mask correctly. Even after that, fans complained the league targeted the Raiders.
Gruden made a production of misinforming his team that he contracted COVID in the summer. As part of a readiness plan, Gruden ran a COVID drill. He took this serious enough to drill but to not wear the mask, after actually contracting it? Make it make sense. Early this fall, at a charity function, thrown by Darren Waller, players mingled maskless. The league levied weak fines and the Raiders apparently continued to flout the protocols. After that, fans decried the league’s penalty. There is a fine line between being a fan and oblivious to facts. All of the Raiders’ COVID nightmare ends with Jon Gruden’s attitude towards the virus.
Despite signing a lucrative contract and playing well when healthy, Trent Brown endures the scorn of the fanbase due to injury. If you are honest, you cannot blame him for injury. Football is a violent sport, and people will inevitably miss time. However, yesterday’s news that Trent Brown neither wore his mask consistently and hung around his linemen teammates, similarly unmasked should raise a red flag. Forget the injuries, as they are beyond his control. Not wearing the mask, when the NFL specifically told you to is otherworldly irresponsible and could affect the team. The Raiders placed Brown on the COVID list and sequestered their entire starting offensive line.
Fatigue and Anger
Every day, people die from COVID. Similarly, masking could help prevent some of these infections. For players on the Titans and Raiders to ignore protocols placed themselves, teammates, and the season in a state of constant peril. No one is assaulting their liberties. Just think of your fellow Americans, and follow the rules.
As of this writing, the other four offensive linemen tested negative. So, Trent Brown, Johnathan Abram and Damon Arnette will sit out Sunday’s scheduled game. Now, the hitch is that these players will not have an abundance of playing time if they’re cleared to play. Facing a defense with 22 sacks already would be an arduous task for anyone with a full week of snaps. Basically, the Raiders need to be thankful if no one else tests positive. A global pandemic is not the time to play fast and loose with the rules.