Roger Goodell: There had been ‘some anxious days’ on dealing with Covid-19 throughout the NFL season


The virus led to shuffled schedules, together with a Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers sport being performed on a Wednesday afternoon. The Denver Broncos needed to play a sport with no quarterback. Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski was pressured to overlook his crew’s playoff street win in opposition to the Steelers as a result of he had examined constructive for the virus.

But not a single sport was canceled this NFL season regardless of the pandemic, and now only one sport stays with Super Bowl LV. And that is one thing NFL commissioner Roger Goodell referred to as “an extraordinary collective effort.”

“There’s so many people that had to work together to get this done,” Goodell informed reporters in his annual Super Bowl information convention. “There were doubters. Obviously, there were people that didn’t believe we could do it. Obviously, we had a lot of unknowns ourselves.

“But we believed that staying on schedule and dealing in direction of making an attempt to get to 256 video games accomplished — as we form of say shorthand, keep away from the asterisk. I feel we had been in a position to try this, however we have nonetheless bought just a few days left right here, so we’re centered on ensuring we end out robust.”

There were scares throughout the season, with outbreaks occurring on teams including the Tennessee Titans and Ravens.

Goodell admitted Thursday in Tampa, Florida, that there have been intervals of time when there was uncertainty the league may get a deal with on coping with the virus.

“It began in Tennessee the place we weren’t positive how you can management this, what was making this,” Goodell said. “Those had been some anxious days, there is no query about it.

“But we believed in our medical experts. We believed in the protocols. We were able to get that under control, and we learned a lot from that, that we then applied and changed, and I think that helped us.

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“And then after we had, for instance the Baltimore case, we had been in a position to determine that faster, however we had been in a position to determine the place the supply was higher. Every stage we discovered from that in with the ability to determine this and isolate.

“Our whole concept here was not to avoid positives. We knew that that was not possible when you’re dealing with 7,500 people just in our system essentially, who were being tested almost every day. That was not going to happen. But the idea is to test frequently, identify when you have a positive and isolate.”

Goodell mentioned 1.2 million followers attended NFL video games this season. There can be round 25,000 followers in attendance for Super Bowl LV at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Sunday, and attendees can be offered PPE kits from the league.

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“We want our fans to be safe,” Goodell mentioned. “They need to be smart. They need to wear their PPE.”

The NFL is the potential of growing regular-season video games from 16 to 17 in 2021, because the league has the discretion within the collective bargaining settlement to implement that as quickly as this 12 months.

It hasn’t been determined if worldwide video games can be on the schedule in 2021, and it is also not but recognized what fan attendance will appear to be subsequent season and what sorts of Covid-19 protocols can be wanted for gamers.

“I wish I knew the answer to that,” Goodell mentioned. “One of the things that I think I have learned and I think all of us have learned is try not to project too far in advance because it’s difficult to do. … I know this: We’ve learned to operate in a very difficult environment. We have found solutions, and we’ll do it again.”

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