Coming off their Week 6 bye, the Las Vegas Raiders are currently preparing for a big NFL “Sunday Night Football” home game against Tom Brady and the Buccaneers. Unfortunately, the Raiders might not have all five of their starting offensive linemen on the field.
This is not a drill. And it could have wide-ranging ramifications for both the Raiders and the rest of the NFL heading into Week 7.
Raiders send offensive line home due to COVID-19 fears
Earlier on Wednesday, starting right tackle Trent Brown was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list. This does not mean Brown actually tested positive for the virus. Instead, it indicates that he came into close contact with someone who has COVID-19.
Then, in some shocking news, the Raiders decided to send the rest of their starting offensive line home from practice.
The status for all five players is not yet known. Needless to say, this could be an unfortunate situation for Raiders quarterback Derek Carr. He’s thrown 11 touchdowns compared to one interception and has Las Vegas at a surprising 3-2 on the season.
As for the Raiders and COVID-19, questions will obviously be raised about the whereabouts of Brown during the team’s by in Las Vegas. That region has seen a dramatic uptick in cases as the United States deals with a new wave of COVID-19. This is magnified by the fact that the Raiders have already been fined multiple times by the NFL for failing to follow the league’s virus-related protocols.
2020 NFL schedule and COVID-19
More concerning from a league-wide standpoint is the possibility that Sunday night’s game between the Buccaneers and Raiders might have to be postponed. As of right now, there’s no confirmed positive COVID-19 tests within the Raiders’ organization. How this plays out in the coming hours will tell us a lot.
The NFL has already had to postpone multiple games due to COVID-19 outbreaks within the New England Patriots and Tennessee Titans‘ organizations. It really can’t afford for the issue to grow any further while still expecting to play a full 16-game schedule without any more interruptions.
At the very least, this news coming out of Vegas must be eye-opening for the powers that be back east in New York City.