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The Student Newspaper of MAST Academy, since 1991.
The Student News Site of MAST Academy

The Beacon

The Beacon

GALLERY: Prom 2024
GALLERY: Prom 2024
April 7, 2024

The new football life (NFL)

By Giorgia Cattaneo
Truck Editor

The NFL and its fans this year have taken a massive blow from the COVID-19 pandemic. The virus has caused many changes and new regulations to be put in place just to be able to start the season. Unlike the NBA and NHL, the NFL will not be using the bubble concept, so COVID-19 is going to be a high risk and inevitable amongst the team and personnel for the next 5 months. The NFL gave the option to players to make before August 6, if they wanted to opt out of the 2020 season and still earn some salary, they could. In reference to attendance only 6 out of the 32 teams were planning to host fans at a significantly reduced capacity (as of monday prior to Week 1), the others will open the season without fans. The NFL does plan on adding crowd noise during games in their stadiums. The Miami Dolphins being one of the teams allowing fans in at 20% capacity. The other teams include the Jackson Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, Indianapolis Colts, Dallas Cowboys and Cleveland Browns. 

The NFL has set up two different groups,  Tier 1 —”players and essential football personnel whose job function requires direct access to players for more than 10 minutes at a time on a regular basis”— and Tier 2 —”other essential personnel who may need to be in close proximity to players and other Tier 1 individuals and who may need to access restricted areas periodically.” Travel is restricted to just these two groups and both go under daily testing for the virus which is said to continue through the season except for game days.  Physical distancing protocols will be mandated wherever possible.Team facilities are prepared for daily symptom screening and temperature checks. 

The league has put some serious restrictions for the players and faculty to follow during these times. The players are required to wear masks while traveling to and from games, and allegedly may also be fined if found participating in any “reckless” behavior that would put fellow team mates at risk. Though the NFL only strongly recommends wearing a mask during the game, it is not required. If a player is tested positive for Covid they must be immediately isolated. They are forbidden to access team facilities or have any direct contact with fellow players /team personnel and  immediately are placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. The “Reserve/COVID-19” is for players who had to be removed from the active roster due to the virus. Players will be put on the list if they tested positive or came in contact with anyone who has. If on the list, players must follow the return protocols, they need to have a second negative test within 24 hours of the first negative test, go through increased symptom monitoring, eight days of daily testing and follow a regular testing schedule. Though those who initially test positive will isolate while awaiting their backup test results—positive tests are followed by two more tests, a nasal swab and a point-of-care test—, they can be cleared on the same day if both backup tests immediately come back negative. A player who tests positive must be cleared by his team’s head physician before returning. All players who tested positive and recovered/ tested positive for antibodies must undergo additional cardiac screening.

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The new football life (NFL)