COVID-19 strikes again. And although Bill Belichick is the master of adjusting, this time it may be a steep hill.
Just days before the game against the Kansas City Chiefs game was set to go down, big news hit. Patriots quarterback Cam Newton tested positive for COVID-19. Not only will he miss the game, the Patriots and Chiefs are postponed. Which leaves people to wonder how will this effect the season for New England?
'Next Man Up'
Brian Hoyer is next up for the Patriots to play over Jason Stidham. And for many reasons, that’s understandable. Hoyer has played in many tough positions where he needed to fill in. Even to his days as a Houston Texan Hoyer is no stranger to midseason changes. And considering Hoyer has more familiarity with the Patriots playbook, it makes all the sense. But for coach Belichick, there’s way more to worry about as the season progresses.
After absences to star players in the past, Belichick has been able to still win. Tom Brady went down in 2008 and still went 11-5. Antonio Brown was cut after a game and New England still made it to the playoffs. This list goes on. However, people have been reacting different to this highly contagious virus. And it may cut some rosters down extremely short on a week to week basis. Leaving the coaching staff in a tough spot.
For instance, say a few more players test positive, plus injuries, and suspensions. It would be tough for guys to get picked up off of free agency with the rules in place. By the time they’re cleared to play it may be two weeks from now. And with 16 games in a regular season, every game is extremely crucial. Unlike a sport like baseball during the regular season. This is a more important problem than people think. Especially in a AFC East division that looks like tides could be turning to Buffalo’s favor. But the NFL isn’t the only league to have these same incidents from happening.
Changes Need to Be Made
It’s just like the MLB and it’s rough beginning to their season. Players were getting tested positive for COVID-19 left and right. Mainly due to the high travel to different states in order to play a game. And even though players are getting tested regularly, it’s difficult to control a outbreak from happening. It’s just unfortunate it has to come to New Englands leader right before the reigning Super Bowl champs.
The NFL should take up the NBA’s format of play. Have all the teams from their respective divisions play in a close facility. I understand it will be difficult to find a place with a high number of football fields and training staff. Especially for an entire football tema consisting of 52 players. However, I do believe to prevent another incident like this from happening, the NFL needs to make a change.
Feature Image Via CNN