Washington Football Team cancels free agent workout over virus fears
By Ian Cummings
The Washington Football Team is reportedly doing what it can to stymy viral transmission risks, in the wake of increased activity across the NFL.
There was always going to be uncertainty as the NFL kicked off in 2020 amidst an ongoing outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. The virus’ emergence over the offseason cast a shadow of doubt over the regular season, but the NFL was able to establish protocols to keep the action going in spite of the risks, and the Washington Football Team resumed activities along with 31 other teams.
For the first three weeks of the season, things actually went along quite smoothly. The NFL instituted ardent testing, and players who tested positive numbered very few. Those who did test positive were put on a reserve list, and when consequent tests confirmed no transmission to other players, games could proceed as scheduled.
The NFL’s COVID-19 protocols hit a snag this week, however, when an outbreak was contained within the Tennessee Titans’ locker room. Over a dozen Titans players and coaches tested positive after their Week 3 game, and their Week 4 contest was rescheduled as a result. Additionally, the Patriots and Chiefs had to bump their match back a day due to COVID-19 concerns.
COVID-19 is starting to make an impact on the 2020 regular season, and the Washington Football Team is not entirely immune. According to The Athletic’s Ben Standig, the Washington Football Team cancelled a free agent workout on Monday due to COVID-19 concerns. Standig went on to clarify that one player in a group of incoming tryouts was potentially affected by the virus.
Standig elaborated further that the players included in the workout were in D.C. over the weekend to prepare for their audition, but the team cancelled “due to caution over COVID-19”. Standig concluded by specifying that the decision was made specifically by the Washington Football Team, and not mandated by the NFL.
Washington has been diligent in making roster changes when necessary this season, but in light of increased COVID-19 concerns, they would rather exercise caution, than onboard a viral host unknowingly and spark an outbreak within the team’s walls. It remains to be seen if the workout will be rescheduled, or if Washington will choose to keep their roster as is for a week, to the best of their ability.