The week of the unknown for the Washington Football Team
The Washington Football Team, until recently, has been one of the teams that have handled COVID-19 the best. Other than a training camp scare in 2021, Washington has kept the virus at bay. It has prevented the pandemic from having too large of an effect on its football operation.
Well, the law of averages decided to even out at the worst possible time for Washington. As it currently sits, the Washington Football Team is tied with Cleveland for second in the league with 21 players on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. Only the Rams, who reached 25 in that regard on Thursday, have more.
That is approaching half of the active roster. And many of these players are asymptomatic, vaccinated players. Meaning Washington could get some, or most of these players back before Sunday’s all-important game against Philadelphia.
That is what really makes this week for Washington so difficult. Sure, missing basically the entire defensive line — including Jonathan Allen, Montez Sweat, and Matt Ioannidis — would be less than ideal. Having Kyle Shurmer be the backup (or even worse) the starting quarterback would certainly skew plans.
It is the unknown. That is the worst of it.
The week of the unknown amidst Washington’s COVID-19 outbreak.
The Washington Football Team roster could resemble that of what a Week 4 preseason game would look like. Or they could get almost all of the players on the COVID-19 list back by Sunday. Or it could fall somewhere in the middle.
Washington, not unlike the other six clubs in the intensive protocols for COVID-19 is in limbo. They are not really sure who they will have available on Sunday. Maybe the NFL will lessen the restrictions on getting back asymptomatic, vaccinated individuals by Sunday.
Maybe the players who are vaccinated will be cleared. Or there could be more positives tomorrow, that add to a growing list before Washington simply has to reenact “The Replacements Game” of 1987 against the Cowboys and hope for the same results.
And the cherry on top of all of this is that it comes during a week that is a “must-have” game for Washington. The winner of this week’s NFC East duel has the advantage in the NFC Wild Card picture. The other falls a game behind the pack and will need some luck.
Washington’s season has reached the tip of the iceberg. It has reached the point where games matter the absolute most. The official, blaring in red “Code Red” officially stamped games are upon the Washington Football Team.
And Ron Rivera has no idea who will play and for that matter coach in the game. Tomorrow could bring good news for Washington. Unfortunately, it could just as well bring bad news. Washington’s season most likely stands at the mercy of an invisible enemy.
Ron Rivera likes to say the team needs to throw their stone. They throw a stone at the whiteboard after every win following the bye week. If circumstances stay relatively the same, Washington certainly will need a larger stone.
The week of uncertainty. That sentence pretty much sums up Week 15 for the Washington Football Team. I, myself, did not know what to write about for this week’s game, so I settled for this.
No one knows what will happen Sunday or who will even play for Washington. And Washington will most likely need to dig deep into the reserves of their “resolve tank” to keep pace in the NFC Wild Card hunt.