Did the Marlins’ Outbreak Cause the NFL Opt-Out Decisions
Miami Marlins will not be playing baseball until Monday. There was a chance that they could play this weekend, but the Washington Nationals decided they did not want to travel to Miami. Everyone is on edge a bit in baseball and other sports. On Tuesday, several NFL players decided not to play this season including new Green Bay Packers wide receiver Devin Funchess. The reasons for not playing are familial or health-related. Not many are criticizing the players for taking a year off. But what is getting lost in the discussion is the Marlins’ outbreak being a factor.
If we lived in a hypothetical world where Miami had their four cases, but nothing more, would we see the NFL players make the same decisions this week? I’m unsure. They read the news, watch ESPN, and all anyone talked about for a good day was the mess of the situation for the Marlins. Despite this being their livelihood, many NFL players saw this as a sign of things to come with their team and opted out. If Marlins contained the virus to a few players, the story coming out of the NFL might be different. Players would still opt-out, but it might not be to this level.
Marlins caused everyone to be on edge but not enough is being reported on Miami’s failures. Most are covering what’s wrong with baseball. NFL and other MLB players are only seeing that part of the story. What they’re missing is the fact Miami’s manager admitted to not being able to social distance in Atlanta due to rain. If the players do not have reasons for health or family for opting out but are scared (Which is fair in today’s climate), they need to be asking questions of their team. What steps will be taken to ensure a Marlins situation doesn’t happen?
We’ll see if more players opt out today. It will not be surprising if this is a continued theme for the remainder of the week. Football will press on, but there will be some key players missing from the mix.