Despite the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the NFL is set to kick off the 2020 season as scheduled.
Players reported to training camp this past week after the NFL and NFLPA agreed on health and safety protocols, including daily testing and staggered player schedules for individual workouts and training.
Due to coronavirus, the league instituted a Reserve/COVID-19 list that will allow teams to place players who have either tested positive for the virus or is quarantining after coming into close contact with an infected person. There is also the option to be placed on the Reserve/Opt-Out list and according to the Rams’ official website it appears as though offensive tackle Chandler Brewer will be sitting out the season:
“With my history with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, I am at high risk and will opt out of playing in the NFL this season,” Brewer said. “I would like to thank the Rams for their support and I look forward to getting back on the field in 2021 and beyond.”
Rams general manager Les Snead supported Brewer’s choice to opt out and wished him well:
“Chandler is a promising player in this league and we fully support his decision,” Rams General Manager Les Snead said. “He has fought through adversity before and we look forward to him being back on the field with us next year.”
It is an uncertain and troubling time and players like Brewer would be risking their lives if they decided to play out the season. While losing depth along the offensive line is a bit of a blow for the Los Angeles Rams, the projected starters are still available and that is something to hang their hats on.
Although the NFL is finally tackling the COVID-19 situation, it remains to be seen if the season will begin without a hitch as there are likely going to be more positive cases confirmed in the following weeks. Training camp has already been modified and preseason games were cancelled, but there has to be genuine concern about starting the season on time.
For Los Angeles, they have a steep hill to climb given the current circumstances. With all the roster and coaching turnover this past offseason, it will be interesting to see how they handle implementing the playbook and getting the roster ready to play.