- The NFL has postponed the Tennessee Titans/Pittsburgh Steelers game due to the Titans’ positive coronavirus tests.
- The Tennessee Titans closed team facilities after multiple players and personnel members tested positive for coronavirus.
- The rescheduled game will be now be played on October 25.
The National Football League has moved quickly to reschedule the Pittsburgh Steelers/Tennessee Titans matchup originally set for Sunday. The rescheduled game will be played on October 25–Week 7–at 10 AM Pacific. That assumes, of course, that the COVID-19 situation doesn’t get worse for the Titans over the next few days. At this point, that’s far from a certainty.
Here’s the timeline of how this all occurred: initially, the report came that three Tennessee Titans’ players and five staff members had tested positive for the coronavirus and ‘out of an abundance of caution’ (the legal jargon catch phrase of the year) closed their facility and ended in person activities. The Titans’ Week 3 opponents–the Minnesota Vikings–did the same thing but quickly reopened their facility after everyone on the team and in the office tested negative.
The NFL’s original plan was to play Sunday’s Tennessee/Pittsburgh game as scheduled. That quickly became untenable and with no real options the league cancelled the game. The NFL continued with the ‘let’s try to pretend this isn’t a problem’ strategy, indicating that the game would be moved to ‘Monday or Tuesday’. You can understand why the league wanted to get the game in and not have to rework their tightly configured schedule. Then again, it makes them look silly as they keep having to backtrack. And backtrack they did:
“The Pittsburgh-Tennessee game scheduled for Week 4 will be rescheduled to later this season after one additional Titans player and one personnel member tested positive for COVID-19 today. An announcement of the new game date will be made shortly.”
“The decision to postpone the game was made to ensure the health and safety of players, coaches and game day personnel. The Titans facility will remain closed and the team will continue to have no in-person activities until further notice.”
In classic NFL form they tried to make this sound like a proactive and not a reactive decision. They quickly released the makeup date and that brings us to where we are now:
The report from NFL.com explained all of the Tetris blocks that had to be moved around to accommodate the schedule change:
The NFL released an updated schedule involving three teams following a COVID-19 outbreak within the Tennessee Titans.
The game between the Titans and Pittsburgh Steelers (originally scheduled for Sunday) has been rescheduled for Week 7 at 1 p.m. ET on Oct. 25, the league announced.
The Steelers’ game against the Baltimore Ravens (originally set for Week 7) has been moved to Week 8, with kickoff coming at 1 p.m. ET on Nov. 1.
Both games will be broadcast on CBS.
The Steelers and Titans’ bye weeks shifted to Week 4 after the league was forced to postpone their Sunday meeting due to the COVID-19 infections within Tennessee’s organization. As a result of these reschedulings, Baltimore’s bye week has moved up from Week 8 to Week 7.
Now the bad news–the Titans’ situation doesn’t appear to be improving:
Positive test results continue to surface for the Tennessee Titans in wake of a recent COVID-19 outbreak.
One Titans player and two staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Saturday, per source.
The news brings the current total of positive COVID-19 cases within the Titans organization to 16 between eight players and eight personnel members.
Earlier today, the Don Best live odds feed sent out an update broaching the possibility that the Week 5 game between the Titans and Buffalo Bills might have to be cancelled:
Should this happen, it would necessitate another rescheduled game involving at least one more team. As noted above, the league’s schedule is tightly configured and almost certainly more teams would have to have scheduled games and byes moved around as well.