When we heard tackle Trent Brown tested positive for COVID-19, we were concerned. After all, we don’t want anyone catching the virus. However, we have learned more details about the events that transpired and the picture isn’t pretty. Brown’s and his teammates’ behavior could end up being costly for the Las Vegas Raiders.
This story is complex and has more than just one thread
It’s easy to jump to conclusions without having enough hard evidence. It’s just human nature, but we need to be careful not to pass judgment too fast. Although we need to be called out when we make mistakes, we need to gather solid data to come up with an objective conclusion.
The first thing that should’ve felt when we heard about Brown’s news was empathy. COVID-19 is no joke and we must take it seriously. We have to discern Brown the person and Brown the player and his health should’ve been the first topic we discussed after hearing the news.
The Raiders have a fluid situation on their hands
Having said that, more information surfaced on Thursday. Apparently, Brown took his COVID tracker off and was partying as were other Raiders offensive linemen per Tom Pelissero of NFL Media. Looking at the whole situation, the right tackle, his teammates and the organization will likely face consequences.
The immediate impact of Brown’s behavior was that he was going to miss the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Things don’t end there though, he might’ve exposed others in the process or he could have gotten exposed by others. Tackle Kolton Miller, center Rodney Hudson, guards Gabe Jackson and Denzelle Good, and safety Johnathan Abram couldn’t access the team’s facility on Wednesday.
#Raiders RT Trent Brown is asymptomatic after his positive COVID-19 test, I'm told. But some teammates remain isolated as the NFL and NFLPA sort out the situation. Sunday's game against the #Bucs is on as scheduled. @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/T7nGAgXeY8
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) October 22, 2020
If Good, Miller, Hudson, and Jackson don’t clear the protocol by Sunday, the Raiders could be without their starting offensive line. Although quarterback Derek Carr isn’t focused on who plays or not, it would be a big blow for the team. To make matters worse, the league moved the Silver and Black’s Week 7 game from 8:20 ET to 4:05 ET. Meanwhile, the Arizona Cardinals and the Seattle Seahawks will take over the Sunday Night Football slot.
The NFL needed a game for prime time so it made sense for them to move the Raiders game to an earlier schedule. There’s a chance the league postpones the Raiders game for Monday or Tuesday but it’s uncertain if they will. For now, we can’t speculate and need to come to terms that the Raiders won’t play on Sunday night.
The Raiders brought this predicament upon themselves
Brown’s actions are going to end up affecting him and the team. Had he been careful we would be talking about matchups and the Injury Report. Also, the organization must be held accountable. This is not the first COVID-19 violation they’ve had.
Changing the Silver and Black’s game from prime time to the 4:05 slot was not a case of ‘Raiders vs the world’. They just simply broke the rules and it wasn’t even the first time. They will likely end up getting a punishment that is proportional to their miscues. Some could argue that other teams have committed violations but they weren’t as flagrant as the ones the Raiders had. No other player (that we know of) in the NFL other than Brown has taken his tracker off in order to party.
It’s not pleasant to see people being reckless during the current pandemic. It’s up to the league to decide how they will proceed on this one. Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Olson isn’t crying a river. Instead, he’s preparing to the best of his capacities just like Carr is. The season isn’t over yet and the Raiders have to play a game on Sunday. They can’t shed tears because of something they caused.
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Top Photo: Heidi Fang/Las Vegas Review-Journal