Coaches with COVID-19? Washington's Ron Rivera has game plan if virus impacts staff

Posted at 3:50 PM, Aug 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-05 19:19:47-04

LOUDOUN COUNTY, Va. - Great coaches are known for their preparation. Here in 2020, amid a global pandemic, NFL staffs are game planning for what seems to be an undefeated opponent: COVID-19.

“We’ve talked about that as far as those things are concerned," Ron Rivera, head coach of the Washington Football Team said this week.

What happens if a coach comes down with COVID-19? It's a situation that's already taken place in the NFL, as Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson has tested positive for COVID-19.

"We are fortunate, as in today’s game, that pretty much every position has a position assistant and they are younger coaches that have come in and are getting opportunities to learn and develop their craft," Rivera explained. "What may happen, depending on who gets sick, that person (position assistant) will elevate. But, you’ll have the coordinator there a little bit more than usual, I’ll be there a little bit more than usual and some of the other position coaches that are around them can help out as well. Something that we talked about two weeks ago when we first got back, how do we want to handle this? The big thing just being, we got young guys in position and they have to understand, they have to realize and recognize that their opportunity can come at anytime, no different than a player. If a starter gets hurt or can’t play, the backup has to be ready to go and in this case, the same thing.”

So, this season, it won't be just the players with a depth chart.