The NFL moved the undefeated Steelers bye week from week 8 to week 4 after several Titans players tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this season. This new change has players and fans livid. Moreover, many say they believe the NFL is working against them.
However, the NFL says the change was made to keep players safe.
“This decision was made out of an abundance of caution to ensure the health and safety of players, coaches and game day personnel and in consultation with medical experts,” the NFL said in a statement.
Players who tested positive for COVID-19 will be ineligible to play on Sunday. That includes running backs Mark Ingram and J.K. Dobbins, quarterback Trace McSorley, center Matt Skura, guard Patrick Mekari, defensive end Calais Campbell and outside linebacker Pernell McPhee, ESPN said.
In a response to ESPN’s Brooke Pryor’s tweet that she was about to go on the air to discuss the NFL’s decision to postpone the game, Steelers tight end Eric Ebron explained the team’s frustrations.
The NFL hadn’t released the new game time or broadcast information Wednesday afternoon. This is the 13th game the NFL has postponed over COVID-19 this season.
Decision to Move Game has Fans Angry at NFL
Fans and analysts were also perplexed by the decision to move the game. To them, it doesn’t make sense to postpone the Thanksgiving game when earlier this month the league made the 49ers play a Thursday Night Game despite several players being ineligible because of a positive COVID-19 test. The Green Bay Packers ended up beating the 49ers 34-17 in that Nov. 5 match-up.
However, The Mercury News says there was a difference. It’s because Baltimore has more confirmed cases of COVID-19, the paper said. Furthermore, coronavirus is worse now in the United States than it’s ever been.
Regardless, few seemed OK with the decision to postpone the game.