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NFL changes Week 7 schedule amid potential Las Vegas Raiders COVID-19 outbreak

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The Las Vegas Raiders sent their entire starting offensive line home on Wednesday after starting right tackle Trent Brown was exposed to COVID-19 during their bye week. With Brown now on the reserve/COVID list, the NFL has decided to change its Week 7 schedule.

NFL changes Week 7 schedule

The Raiders’ home game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, originally slated for Sunday night on NBC, has been moved to 4:05 PM EST and will air on Fox.

In that game’s stead, the NFL has decided to change its “Sunday Night Football” schedule. The Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals will now take on one another on NBC.

Here’s the NFL’s full release as it relates to its Week 7 schedule change.

NFL schedule and CODID-19

This is not the first time that the NFL has had to change its schedule to take into account the growing pandemic in the United States. The Tennessee Titans and New England Patriots each saw outbreaks earlier in the season, forcing the NFL to change its schedule multiple times.

Despite the issues we’re seeing within the NFL right now, the league still plans to forge ahead with a full 17-week schedule without adding an additional week ahead of the wild card round of the playoffs.

With that said, the NFL is also open to changing its Super Bowl schedule and moving the game to March should the league be forced to add Week 18 to its regular-season schedule. That seems to suggest that those in power believe there’s a good chance more games will be postponed.

Las Vegas Raiders Allegiant Stadium ahead of MNF against the Saints
Sep 21, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; General view of an end zone with the message “End Racism” written in it before a NFL game between the New Orleans Saints and Las Vegas Raiders at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

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This was always going to be problematic. Attempting to play a full schedule amid the pandemic while not existing in a bubble atmosphere like what we saw with the NBA and NHL after their seasons resumed.

As for the Raiders, it’s not yet known whether there’s an outbreak right now. The team is conducting testing and contact tracing ahead of Sunday’s scheduled game against the Buccaneers.

We’ll obviously have more updates on the Raiders’ situation in the coming hours and days.

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