If you thought you could get away with watching Thanksgiving football all day instead of being with extended family members you barely tolerate, think again.
The Baltimore Ravens’ COVID-19 outbreak has seemingly left the NFL no choice but to postpone Thursday’s game with the Pittsburgh Steelers to Sunday afternoon. Kickoff time and network TBD.
Ravens-Steelers game postponed until Sunday afternoon.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 25, 2020
Baltimore has had seven players test positive for COVID since Monday, including running backs Mark Ingram and JK Dobbins as well as starting offensive linemen Matt Skura and Pat Makari. Considering Baltimore’s OL is already severely undermanned due to injuries, having more guys out due to the virus would’ve had Lamar Jackson out there possibly playing behind nightclub bouncers. Add in close contacts and Baltimore joins their re-newly (is that a word?) hated rival Tennessee Titans as the only two teams in the league that have had a bad COVID outbreak.
It’s worth noting that the Ravens play next Thursday at home against the Dallas Cowboys, so the league has some thinking to do should this Steelers game not be played at all. As for the Steelers, this is the second time they’ve had a game moved off its intended date due to the other team’s outbreak.
Even with positives on every NFL team except the Seattle Seahawks, the number of games the league has actually moved has been minimal. This is the first time since October that they’ve had to tinker with the schedule the week of, but the virus has spread even more rapidly since then and there are no more bye weeks after Week 13. If this happens a few more times then perhaps we do see the NFL trigger that contingency 16-team playoff, which would actually benefit the Ravens seeing as they’re out of a playoff spot as things stand.
So when Thursday arrives you’ll be watching the Texans at Lions and Washington at Cowboys. It’s 2020 so it’s perhaps fitting that this year’s NFL on Turkey Day slate gives us four teams with a combined record of 14-27 and two backup QBs playing for first-place in the rancid NFC East.