NFL commissioner Roger Goodell defends Ravens postponement, Broncos inaction

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell smiles before the Super Bowl in February. | Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

He repeated the NFL’s stance: that it will not postpone games if there was an outbreak “even within a position group if we feel comfortable the rest of the team was not at risk.” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell on Wednesday defended his decision to postpone the Ravens game six days because of a coronavirus outbreak — and not do the same for the Broncos when a position group was wiped out.
The Ravens will play without about a dozen starters Wednesday night against after a coronavirus outbreak forced their Thanksgiving night game against the Steelers to be postponed.
The Broncos, meanwhile, played their game against the Saints on Sunday despite all their quarterbacks being ineligible to play because they either tested positive or were close contacts. The Broncos lost by 28 points and played a practice-squad receiver at quarterback.
Goodell said Wednesday that the Ravens game was postponed “to ensure that we have confidence that the virus was contained.” Every Ravens player scheduled to play Wednesday night passed a coronavirus test Wednesday morning.
Goodell said the decision he made was similar to the league postponing games earlier this season after the Titans and Patriots tested positive.
He repeated the NFL’s stance: that it will not postpone games if there was an outbreak “even within a position group if we feel comfortable the rest of the team was not at risk.” He said all NFL clubs have known that stance all season long.
Goodell said the NFL’s goal is to safely complete the regular season and that “all the options are on the table” to ensure the postseason is played safely. He dismissed the notion of putting playoff teams in a traditional “bubble” — in which they’re all housed and play games in the same city.

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